County Commission Joins Counties In Opposition Of U.S.F.S. Hog Hunting Ban - The Independent-Journal: Local News

County Commission Joins Counties In Opposition Of U.S.F.S. Hog Hunting Ban

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Posted: Thursday, August 1, 2019 4:04 pm

by Kris Richards

The Washington County Commission unanimously approved a Resolution in opposition to the U.S. Forest Service’s closure of Mark Twain National Forest to public hog hunting on Monday, July 22nd during their regular weekly meeting at the Courthouse.

Any farmer, land owner or individual that enjoys the outdoors can attest to the damage that continues to go on daily around Washington County as well as surrounding counties from the feral hog growing population.

Land owner after land owner have told stories of the ground being destroyed, fences over run, water holes ruined by the feral hogs that run freely across the countryside.

While different approaches have been made locally to control the growing numbers, the hogs are winning. A ban on hunting feral hogs on public property would do nothing but aide the population explosion.

Trapping has been used by different groups and agencies with limited success. Arguments against the hunting of feral hogs have mainly been based on the theory that putting down a few hogs only scatters the group and makes the situation worse.

Many local farmers, crop and livestock, have running totals on the hogs that have been dispatched. If they scatter, they must come back, because the same people continue to add to their numbers.

While some have taken to the hunt for sport most want to element the pest that is nothing but destructive and a nuisance.

If the hogs are given “sanctuary” on public lands, what will that do to the public lands? And, what keeps the protected hogs on public and off of private. The majority of people who have an opinion in rural Washington County think they should go, for good.

The Resolution passed by the County Commission reads as follows:

Missouri County Commission

Resolution

In Opposition to US Forest Service

Closure of

Mark Twain National Forest

To Public Hog Hunting

WHEREAS, County Commissioners are tasked with the responsibility of serving the best interests of County Residents, and managing all aspects of county business not assigned by law to other elected officials, and

WHEREAS, County Commissioners are elected by County Residents to serve as a liaison for the county between other local units of government, regional bodies, state and federal agencies, and

WHEREAS, as a rule, Commissioners in rural Counties uniquely deal with private landowner, farm and ranch, hunting and trapping, wildlife, livestock and other similar agricultural interests and issues on a larger percentage per capita than urban Commissioners, and

WHEREAS, the wild and/or feral hog population is currently most dense in Southern Missouri Counties, therefore proper management is imperative to keep them from moving to Northern Counties, and

WHEREAS, Commissioners are in agreement that all avenues and resources, Public and Private, of wild and/or feral hog management must be utilized to keep the at-large population in check.

WHEREAS, Mark Twain National Forest represents over two million acres of Public property, which adjoins millions of acres of Private properties, and contains a large concentration of Missouri’s wild hogs, and

WHEREAS, we are in consensus that deliberately banning or inhibiting thousands of current law-abiding Public and Private Hog Hunters, Trappers, Landowners from participating in said game management on Public property, and by default,  on subsequent adjoining Private properties, will ultimately result in rampant over-population in current locations, and threatens to spread across the State, and

WHEREAS, we believe that the closure of Mark Twain National Forest will also inadvertently create undue Federal criminal charges against Citizens who have participated in wild hog management on said Public property for generations, for the lawful purposes of recreation, conservation, and human consumption.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the under-signed Missouri County Commissioners hereby go on record in OPPOSITION of the proposal by the US Forest Service to ban Public Hog Hunting on Mark Twain National Forest.

Signed on this 22nd day of July, 2019.

/s/ Dave Sansegraw

    Presiding Commissioner

/s/ Doug Short

    First District Commissioner

/s/ Cody Brinley

    Second District Commissioner

/s/ Jeanette Allen, County Clerk

The Resolution has been passed by numerous rural counties in Missouri, some 17 at least. If you have an opinion, let the United States Forest Service know, it’s your right and your land.

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