Dealing with wild pig scrounging in San Diego County

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wildpig1Meeting at their regularly scheduled Wednesday session, the Board of Supervisors of San Diego County passed, with no dissenting votes, the implementation of a program aimed at reducing the number of wild pigs in the county. The vote also gave park directors authorization to allow firearms to be deployed against aggresive, non-indigenous wildlife that have been seen destroying the region’s natural ecology.

Reports prepared and presented to the board by their staff indicated that a significant population of the animals, perhaps as many as one thousand pigs, were known to be damaging natural landscapes and private property in the East County through their activities in finding food. As described in the staff report, the pigs often transmit diseases that may affect the human and farm animal populations. In addition, they have been known to infect water supplies with pathogens.wildpig2

Much of the destruction can be seen near and inside of Lake Morena County Park. The feral pigs dig out plants and any obstacles they find in their quest to root out their meals from the ground. They then enter the shallow parts of the lake, causing pollution there by leaving behind food and relieving themselves in the water.

Organized discussions and formal meetings have been held concerning the situation of wild swine in the county since 2010. Attendants at such conferences have included appointees of local Native American tribes, county representatives, California officials and federal personnel. As noted in a paper prepared by the staff supporting the meetings, there have been pig-sightings from the Mexican border near Portrero up to Palomar Mountain, running through the Cuyamaca State Park.

wildpig3Three methods will be used to reduce the pig population:

  • Trapping and shooting those caught
  • Shooting the pigs from the ground without first trapping them
  • Shooting the pigs from helicopters

A decision concerning what persons will participate in the pig culling will be made by officials of the California Department of Forests and Wildlife. This will have no impact on landowners rights to have and use firearms on their own property.


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