April 2023


Feral swine (Sus scrofa) as an invasive species in the U.S. have caused severe damage to natural resources through competing for food resources with domestic livestock and destroying habitat by rooting and wallowing. Given their increased population and wide distribution in the southern U.S., feral swine control is becoming an urgent issue for both natural resource managers and landowners. We conducted a three-state mail survey to examine feral swine damage in Arkansas, Louisiana, and East Texas in the western gulf region in 2021. Our results reveal that feral swine activities like rooting and wallowing can cause severe and widespread damage to agriculture and forestry. Among the most reported and concerned damage by feral swine were crops, pastures, livestock, and loss of land value. Soybean damage was the most important agricultural crop damage in both Arkansas and Louisiana while it was hay, silage, and forage crops in East Texas. In terms of livestock damage, beef cattle and calves were the most common and severe damage in all three states. Average economic loss due to feral swine damage was estimated at $67.13/ha, $42.96/ha, $27.31/ha, and $57.54/ha for landowners in the region who owned cropland, forestland, pastureland, and multiple land types, respectively. Those findings could help both landowners and wildlife management personnel understand the negative societal impact of feral swine, and they could also facilitate the comparison between expected benefits and costs of control programs/options for feral swine in the southern states.


Tian, N., Gan, J. & Holley, G.
Assessing feral swine damage in the western gulf region of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas. Biol Invasions (2023).