Bushpig hunting continues to increase in popularity. Similar to the European wild boar, the bush pig is South Africa's equivalent. It resembles the domestic hog, but has much more hair. More colorful, the SA bush pig's coat can range from black in the lower body to blonde on its back. It shares some similarities with feral hogs in parts of the US also, but is smaller in size to the North American and European counterparts.
Compared to the warthog, the bushpig tusks are somewhat smaller. His snout is also narrower, and the ears are more pointed. A bushpig stands between 26-39 inches at shoulder height, and weighs between 120-330 pounds.
One thing the South African bushpig has in common with other members of the feral swine family, is its aggressive disposition.
Female bushpigs are smaller than the males. The animals tend to live in groups of up to a dozen, led by a dominant male and female. During the day, the animals will lay-up in dense underbrush and thickets. They tend to be more active at night time, when they raid farms for fallen fruit, nuts, bulbs, roots and carrion. Bushpig hunting is a means for population control, which helps mitigate the damage they do to farms. It is usually an add-on to plains game hunting safaris, and you don't need a special permit or license. Trophies may be imported to the US.
Bushpig hunting is usually an add-on to plains game hunting safaris
|Scientific Name:||Potamochoerus larvatus|
|Gestation Period:||4 months|
|Weight:||55 - 150 kg|
|Height:||6 - 100 cm|
|Tusk Length:||7 cm|
While it is a more unlikely method of taking a bushpig, is possible to hope that you might run into one during the daytime while hunting for plains game. Professional hunters prefer one of the other, proven successful methods.
Baiting bushpig works well. The hunting team will set the bait of rotten vegetables and meat and wait with you behind a blind until the animal comes to feed. Alternatively, you could use solar powered red lights or trail cameras to avoid wasted time.
Whichever method you prefer, it is crucial to remain absolutely still. With their acute sense of sight, hearing and smell, it is easy for the bushpig to spell a hunter up-wind. If you don't treat them with respect, they will become aggressive.
At night, you can also use a spotlight to search the fields for a foraging bore, or use dogs to chase the bushpig. Hounds can identify animal scents up to twenty hours later, making them an extremely useful asset on the hunting grounds. They will track the bushpig down.
In South Africa, a minimal caliber of .270 is required. You can also use a shotgun with slugs.
Accurate shot placement is crucial, as a wounded bushpig can become very dangerous if it is wounded. If you're unsure at all, please speak to your professional hunter.
The typical shot placement rule of thumb applies. Aim approximately one third way up the body from the bottom of the chest and up the right shoulder for a heart-lung shot.