Gunning for Hogs by Chester Moore

Texas Sasquatch by Chester Moore
September 25, 2017
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Deer season is upon us but that does not mean hog hunting is over.

It doesn’t take a lot of motivation to become a hog hunter in Texas.

In fact, some of the best opportunities to kill hogs is during the fall and winter and the vast majority of hogs killed by hunters comes during this period.

Thermal imaging and hog feeder lights are effective tools for hunting hogs after dark.

We have gathered the best information on how to score on hogs specifically with guns which is by far the best way to make a dent in their populations even if hogs are too spooky to enter traps.

Here we go…

 

Fence Line Fun

Fence lines on even the thickest Texas properties are typically cleared out offering rifle hunters potentially long shots if they can figure out which way the hogs are traveling.

Animals follow fence lines as travel routes whether they are on a low fence 100,000-acre ranch, in a city park or a 100-acre hog hunting preserve.

Take a walk down the fence lines and pay close attention to hog rooting activity on the edge of the fence clearing and also trails just inside the tree lines. You can bait up the smaller hogs quite easily by putting corn out upwind of your location and using a tree stand or a natural brush blind. They will gladly come out into the open to feed.

The bigger ones however are much more shy and tend to travel the inside of the tree lines much more frequently and will often make a route around smaller ranches or at least stake out a territory along some of the thicker zones near fence corridors. The wise hunter takes advantage of this and will check these zones out carefully.

Silence Them

Hunting with suppressors is legal for those with the necessary paperwork and there is nothing more effective than taking them out with a surpassed rifle.

“If you get downwind of hogs and make head shots with a rifle with a suppressor then you can take out multiple hogs,” said Daniel Stark of Killer Instinct Outdoors.

Stark said companies like CZ are creating models specifically aimed at this strategy.

“You have the CZ 527 American Synethic Supressor Ready. It comes with .300 Blackout or 7.62 X 39 both perfect for taking out hogs,” Stark said.

Suppressors are great to use during the day or at night and can be an invaluable tool when hogs are hammering deer feeders during hunting season and keeping them away. Squeeze the trigger long enough on a surpassed rifle like the one described above and you can keep certain hog away permanently.

Night Vision

Night vision is becoming increasingly popular with hog hunters and for good reason.  It gives you a really cool (albeit green) look at the nighttime world and it works great in conjunction with a surpassed rifle.  Night vision equipment comes in generation 1, 2, 3, and 3 plus levels and in the form of riflescopes, monoculars or binoculars. Generation 1 offer a rather dim view of the night world and are only effective if use in conjunction with an infrared light. These lights can only be seen using night vision equipment and animals cannot see it or at least it does not bother them. Generation 2 is not much better but it is an upgrade. I own a pair of generation 3 and have used 3 plus and found they despite being much more expensive are worth the investment if you really feel you need them. 

If night vision is the Cadillac of hog hunting gear, then thermal imaging is the Ferrari. Thermal imaging which picks up heat signatures and in modern devices can give incredible target clarity is on the rise in Texas and is starting to become affordable

Lighting Up Corn

The latest trend in hog hunting is the use of feeder lights, which are lights that typically mount on a solar panel or are battery operated on a timer and come on automatically after dark or at pre set times. After a few nights the hogs become accustomed to feeding around the lights allowing hunters to shoot with regular riflescopes from distances as far as 100 yards. Some of these lights are green like the ones used by fishermen to lure in crappie, speckled trout and other species while others offer a standard white light.

If you decided to undertake hog hunting at night in any fashion make sure you have permission to be on the property and make a courtesy call to the local game warden to let them know you are in the area. That way if they get a call from someone saying they saw lights on a certain piece of property they will not have to waste their time and efforts checking you out. Plus, you might just get some good hunting tips as wardens cover lots of ground and come across many hogs in the process.

Let them Eat

Small to medium size hogs will usually run right in and start eating after they have established a pattern at a feeder. Mature boars and sows will be more cautious.

Hunters should not get over eager to take a shot and let the hogs start feeding before squeezing the trigger. If they are comfortable eating and are focused on gobbling up whatever is on the ground they will be less focused on any sounds or movements you make, allowing you to make an easy, clean shot that translates to wild pork in the freezer.

With a rifle in your hand you have the time to pick out the most strategic hog for population control. Perhaps that big sow needs to go.

Or maybe you have a suppressed CZ 527 in .300 Blackout and can take the whole bunch.

It can happen.

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Hog Hunting in Relative Silence

Sound suppressors are deadly tools for hog hunters and CZ has the perfect gun to fit out with one. The CZ 527 American Suppressor Ready rifle features a classic American pattern stock, a sporter-weight hammer forged barrel, a single set trigger and a recessed target crown.

Built on a .223-length action, the tiniest of CZ’s centerfire platforms is also one of the most beloved by CZ fans.

Made to be used with optics, the American version ships with 1-inch steel scope rings. Threaded 5/8×24 for a suppressor, this short, handy 527 is equally happy shooting steel or taking down hogs. Chambered in .300 Blackout or 7.62×39, it’s got enough knock-down power for most medium game at shorter ranges.

SPECIFICATIONS

Product Name: CZ 527 American Synthetic Suppressor-Ready, .300 Blackout

SKU: 03085

Firearm Type: Rifle

Purpose: Hunting

MSRP: $748.00

Chambering: .300 Blackout

Rate Of Twist: 1:7 inch

Magazine Capacity: 5

Magazine Type: Detachable

Stock: Black Polymer, American-Style

Length Of Pull: 13.5 inches

Sights: No Sights, Integrated 16mm Scope Bases

Barrel: Cold Hammer Forged Barrel

Length: 16.5 inches

Weight: 5.87 pounds

Trigger Mech: Single Set

Trigger Safety: Two-Position

 

 

—story by Chester Moore

 

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