Mississippi State University scientists are conducting research to determine the economic impact of wild hog damage to agriculture in Mississippi.
Bronson Strickland and Jessica Tegt, Extension wildlife biologists in the university's Forest and Wildlife Research Center, are asking farmers and foresters to participate in the study.
Participants will be interviewed on any wild hog impact on their operations. Researchers also hope to conduct field surveys on some farms to determine the physical extent of wild hog damage and to identify surrounding landscape features that may promote or hinder wild hog access to fields.
While Mississippi farmers and foresters face many challenges, wild hogs cause particularly extensive damage to the agricultural landscape. Currently, the national economic impact of wild hog control and damage on public and private property is conservatively estimated at $1.5 billion annually.
Researchers want the outcome of this study to benefit Mississippi farmers, foresters and other agricultural producers by shedding light on the extent of damage caused by wild hogs to land, crops, equipment and, ultimately, production and profitability.
In the long run, researchers want to help lawmakers, land managers and agricultural producers develop tools to accurately evaluate wild hog damage and mitigate losses through better management practices.
MSU and the Land, Water and Timber Board of the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce fund this study, which is conducted through the university's Center for Resolving Human-Wildlife Conflicts.
Farmers and foresters interested in taking part in the study or those who have questions may contact Marina Denny with the MSU Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture at firstname.lastname@example.org or 662-325-4722.