Hunting the wild hog

Hunting the wild hog

Marksman’s unique job helps control an invasive species that threatens other wildlife

Author: Dan Chapman, Public Affairs Specialist

Published: April 9, 2018

Ossabaw Island, Georgia — Codey Elrod has a job most Southern hunters would kill for.

Literally.

My job,” Elrod said, “is to kill hogs.”

And he gets paid for it.

Elrod lives alone on this 40-square mile barrier island below Savannah. He works when he wants — daybreak, late afternoon, middle of the night. His office is the salt marshes, sandy beaches, maritime forests and cypress swamps that make up one of Georgia’s most beautiful sea islands.

“I never would’ve imagined that this would be my job,” Elrod says, trundling through Ossabaw’s swampy midsection in a scruffy Chevy truck with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle riding shotgun. “But I sure do enjoy doing it.”

Paw prints cover a muddy wetland.


Wild hogs and other animals leave hoof and paw prints in the muddy wetland. Photo by Dan Chapman, USFWS.


He is, officially, a “hog control technician” for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources — the only full-time, government-paid wild boar hunter in the South. The specialness of his job owes to the rapaciousness of the hogs. They’re a nasty, eat-everything, invasive species that are alien to Ossabaw and run roughshod over flora and fauna.

Check out the story from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service!

© 2018 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

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