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Hog Hunting – The Off Season Solution

Hog Hunting – The Off Season Solution

By Mike Daniecki

I’m sure the rest of you can agree, there is a very distinct and empty feeling at the end of any big game season. There is also an unequivocal sense of impatience as we gear up and wait for the next one to arrive. Fortunately for me, Texas has no closed seasons on wild hogs, limiting the aforementioned anxieties and feelings of emptiness. If your state affords you the same type of open season, I would urge you take advantage of it.

Hog Hunting – The Off Season Solution
Mike Daniecki. Big Sow. 24 July 2011. 36% Moon.

As with any type of hunting, I suffered initial failures, so I took to the internet for solutions. I found the usual tips and tricks, attractants, baits, habits, etc. Nothing that I would consider ground breaking news or secrets. Several years in the field chasing these wild hogs has led me to my own conclusions on these subjects.

First and foremost, these creatures are driven by appetite. If there is a food source, there are hogs. Now you’re left with catching them on the food, which we will discuss at a later time. The type of food source really seems irrelevant with the successes that I have observed. Corn feeders, protein feeders, fruit piles, buried attractants, and oat fields have all been equally successful. (in the proportions that I have hunted them). Corn is my preferred bait, simply based on price.

Hog Hunting – The Off Season Solution
3 fields, 3 hogs. Hat trick. 01 Sept.2011. 18% moon.

Strong arguments exist that a hog must smell the bait in order to find it, thus leading to the necessity of mixing corn with another attractant. I have mixed corn with cherry Kool Aid following this principal, and have not seen any greater success due to the sweet smelling mixture. There is no doubt in my mind that a hog needs to smell bait, after all, they have an amazing nose. However, they are nomadic and they are constantly traveling, looking for new food sources. I offer you this: A line of corn, dribbled perpendicularly from a truck or four wheeler across an area where hogs travel, will stop any hog with a nose. They can’t help but smell it then, and you’ve stopped them at a place of your choosing.

Although not my favorite technique, I will occasionally stand hunt over corn and protein feeders while scouting my preseason deer. It gives me an opportunity to take some pictures, monitor my antler growth, and of course, put some meat on the table.

Hog Hunting – The Off Season Solution
Francisco Salazar. 14 June 2012. 21% Moon.

When the weather cools down, I really enjoy spotting and stalking in the pastures and food plots. This is an excellent opportunity to get a youngster in the field. I have found that a stalk on preoccupied hogs, is far more forgiving than that of deer. As long as the wind is in your face, and you are reasonably slow in your movements, you can get within bow range relatively easily. They smell and hear with the best of the deer, but their eyesight is lacking, making them a perfect quarry for young hunters and novices looking to sharpen their skills. I have low crawled across a freshly planted oat patch, to get a 100 yard shot on a group of six hogs. I wear camo, or jeans and a t-shirt, and they don’t seem to mind.

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