Invasive, exotic animals can severely impact natural systems by out-competing native plants and animals, altering hydrologic flow patterns, changing fire patterns and introducing foreign pathogens and parasites. Invasive, exotic animals found on many of our Lee County Conservation Lands include: the greenhouse frog (Eleutherodactylus planirostris), the Cuban treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis), the brown anole (Anolis sagrei), and the wild or feral hog (Sus scrofa).
Feral hogs are known to eat small animals and can compete for food with deer, turkey, bear, squirrel, foxes and sandhill cranes. Additionally, feral hogs directly impact vegetation through feeding, and indirectly through rooting and digging, changing succession patterns, soil properties, and water infiltration rates. In short, these exotic invasive animals are a concern to land managers because their high reproductive capability, generalist feeding habits, destructive foraging behavior, and competition with native wildlife species can significantly impact natural ecosystems.
Due to the lack of personnel and the logistics involved with proper hog control methods, Lee County has elected to contract with licensed trappers and hog-hunting outfitters to control hogs on Lee County Conservation Lands. Traditional trapping methods can remove numerous hogs of all age classes, can be used in large rural areas as well as small urban areas, involves limited staff time and can be conducted year-round. While contracted trappers were having some effect on Lee County's Conservation Lands, the high reproductive rate of feral hogs proves to be a formidable challenge. In November 2015, Lee County approved the use of hog hunting on select Preserves; this allows for an additional control method and added recreational opportunities on some of our Preserves.
How can I hunt hogs on Lee County Conservation Lands?
Currently, two hog hunting outfitters are contracted through Lee County to conduct hog hunts on select conservation lands managed by Lee County. These outfitters will handle all of the logistics and safety protocols associated with the hunts they line up for their clientele. Both of these outfitters charge $250 per person/per hunt. Below is their contact information.