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I am new to wild pig hunting in Western Wisconsin. According to the WDNR, wild porkers are in abundant supply and are requested to be shot on sight (provided that one has a small game license, that is), because of the extreme damage to wildlife habitat. A buddy wants me to go wild pig hunting (Eastern Eau Claire County and Western Clark Co). I know that wild porkers are an intelligent animal and can be vicious given the opportunity to "even the score" with its oppressors. I wondered about their eyesight, sense of smell and hearing. I intend on using my trusty MARLIN M-1895 for my weapon of choice. My ammo will be my loads, 445 gr cast with a 0.330" flat meplat, driven at 1587 fps. The accuracy is less than 1-1/4" at 100 yd and my lever action is a decent fast-handling rifle.
Thanks.
 

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Piney Woods Moderator
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Eyesight is not one of their strong points but hearing and smell are above average. I usually locate them by finding their feeding areas which can be located by looking for ground that has been rooted up in their search for food. They will have the ground tore up like a tractor with a plow has been thru the woods. I normally find them in hardwood bottoms where there is lots of acorns and mud holes to wallow in but they will also frequent crop fields. Your 1895 will be more than adaquate for the task. I usually use my 1894 in 44 mag as it is easier to carry. Good luck. I am not a pork fan but do like pork sausage and bacon.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Good luck. Mostly they'll run when you start slinging lead, but I know several people who have been charged after pig was shot. Makes 'em mad, I suppose. If you are in an elevated blind, or shooting out the window of a pickup truck (perfectly legal where I am as long as it's not on a public road) then that increases the safety factor a bunch. Down here we shoot them 24/7 and it's a losing battle. Sometimes you get 2 or 3 with one shot and you're feeling pretty smug!

Advice, bust them through the front shoulders with some sort of decent bullet. Neck shots work but waste a lot of meat. Don't take something afield that is marginal for deer, it may not end well. That's just general advice for any new pig hunters. If in doubt just get the heaviest bullet you can for whatever chambering you are going to use and that should be fine.

Take a sidearm. Bullets are cheap and ER visits are not. If in doubt put one at the base of the ear. But if you bust them through the shoulder it should be well and truly "pre-dead" before you approach with your knife....

Your Marlin load will knock the stink off of them and I cannot find anything wrong with that choice.

Have fun. Shoot as many as you can. Look for rooted-up areas to hunt.
 

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Ditto the above but a regular shoulder shot might not do it and they can do a fancy piece of running on 3 legs. Get a diagram and look at where the internal organs are on a pig, they are further forward than you would think. Head shots aren't a good idea unless you know exactly where the brain is, above the eyes and protected by a thick skull, small hard to hit target. Your Marlin is a fine gun, anything from 357 up will work as long as you don't use hollow points, there are some crazies who only use a bowie knife and their bare hands, I wouldn't want to sell them life insurance.

Go down to post#4 in this thread

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=129776
 

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I have never hunted pigs before. A side arm sounds like a good idea. Sometimes my dad would sell pork off the farm and we would imagine a X between the ears and eyes and shoot them there at close range with a .22 rim fire. They would go straight down.

But yes, thats to close for comfort out in the field. I have not herd that much about wild pigs in Minnesota.
 

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I have relatives and friends around Brainard and have done a lot of fishing around on some of the lakes around Merrifield. I've never known feral hogs hanging around Central Minnesota. It get's a might cold up there in the winter!! Black Bears Yes but no feral hogs.
 

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I have found 4 things to bring while hog hunting:
1) A rifle that is fast, accurate, and one that you are comfortable with.
2) A good powerful sidearm.
3) Lots of ammo. I have seen them in groups of thirty or better.
4) Bring a friend. They can be very unpredictable, its good to have someone watch your back.
I have been stalking game and walked into large groups that were sleeping. They can blend into brush very well. Don't be scared of them, but don't underestimate them. I shot one only to have it turn and run straight at me. OH and they are very tough.
 

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I didn't know that they had pigs in WI! I have been thinking lately about putting a trip together, maybe head down south but if there are some local spots where they need to be controlled that would be great too. I have thought about taking them with a spear, but a bowie knife is getting a little too close for me. I will most likely take a firearm or bow of some sort. Any way it sounds like it would be a hoot to get into hog hunting.
 

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Side note:
Two years ago, I set up a pop-up blind in a small Oak thickett to deer hunt a trail about 75 yards away. Before light, I heard a bunch of animals coming towards me into the Oak thickett. Like a fool, all the trees were dropping acorns like crazy and I had about 25 large medium and small hogs feeding all around me. Here I was with pigletts on my right, and two or three big sows three foot outside the window to the left. I could hear them breathing, and squelling. My heart was in my throat and my finger on the trigger while sitting on my butt between sow and pigletts.
If I shot, I'd get run over, so I waited. After what seems like an hour, one of the hogs caught the scent of the corn on the trail and they all ran down to get it, killed a couple of them but they definitely got my attention.
So, to make a long story longer, bring a big pistol.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Side note:
Two years ago, I set up a pop-up blind in a small Oak thickett to deer hunt a trail about 75 yards away. Before light, I heard a bunch of animals coming towards me into the Oak thickett. Like a fool, all the trees were dropping acorns like crazy and I had about 25 large medium and small hogs feeding all around me. Here I was with pigletts on my right, and two or three big sows three foot outside the window to the left. I could hear them breathing, and squelling. My heart was in my throat and my finger on the trigger while sitting on my butt between sow and pigletts.
If I shot, I'd get run over, so I waited. After what seems like an hour, one of the hogs caught the scent of the corn on the trail and they all ran down to get it, killed a couple of them but they definitely got my attention.
So, to make a long story longer, bring a big pistol.
I bet that was below the spillway. Didn't you try to get me to hunt down there, once????? :eek:
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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Don't know about pig hunting down there, Mike, - but I saw Tom make a neck shot on a tom turkey at 150 yds with his 22-250 on the dam some years ago. Tells me he does it all the time. :p
 

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I didn't know that they had pigs in WI! I have been thinking lately about putting a trip together, maybe head down south but if there are some local spots where they need to be controlled that would be great too. I have thought about taking them with a spear, but a bowie knife is getting a little too close for me. I will most likely take a firearm or bow of some sort. Any way it sounds like it would be a hoot to get into hog hunting.
More than a couple game farms have accidentally or intentionally released hogs in WI. Some southern hunters may bring a pig or 2 in the dog box when they come up for the summer bear running season.

There are a few scattered sightings every year & a breeding population has been established along the Mississippi in Crawford County.
http://dnr.wi.gov/org/land/wildlife/Images/Publ/factsheets/pig/WisconsinFeralPigMap.pdf
 

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Old Grump is right on as usual. Especially the part about the vitals.
A pig is not a deer. The only thing I can add is try to be close to
a small tree. Pigs don't climb or jump. If you get about 4 feet up in
a tree you are pretty safe.

Zeke
 
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