• info@wildcumberland.org
  • PO Box 872 Scottdale, GA 30079

Feral Hogs

Hogs have existed on Cumberland Island for hundreds of years, and were likely introduced by Spanish missionaries and/or European settlers.

Feral hogs severely damage the island’s delicate ecosystem in a number of ways:

  • Interfering with plant communities, affecting nutrient cycling and patterns of plant succession Removing vegetation critical to dune stabilization
  • Competing with native species for food and shelter
  • Destroying the nests of endangered sea turtles and ground-nesting birds, including shorebirds
  • Island wildlife, dependent on these plant communities for adequate food, shelter, and nesting, pays the largest price.

Current Feral Hog Management

Adult sows are capable of breeding twice each year, resulting in an explosive population if unmanaged. The National Park Staff has one dedicated biologist with the authority to hunt; he spends nearly 500 hours doing so each year. The NPS also has an intra-agency agreement that allows support from the USDA’s Wildlife Services program as-needed.

The NPS hosts several managed hunts each year, open to the public with pre-registration; however, these hunts are not considered a reliable or effective means of population control.

The National Park Service does not produce annual reports on the hog population, horse population, or other invasive species management; however, an estimated 5,000 hogs have been removed from Cumberland Island since 2000.

Email the National Park Service now to express your support for the complete eradication of feral hogs from Cumberland Island.

Feral Hog Removal

Dear Superintendent,

I am writing to support the immediate removal of all feral hogs from Cumberland Island. Feral hogs have caused widespread damage to Cumberland Island.

They often destroy the nests of endangered sea turtles and ground-nesting birds. The foraging and rooting of hogs have also greatly disturbed various plant communities and plant patterns of succession; interfered with essential nutrient cycling; and in some areas removed dune stabilizing vegetation. Feral hogs have been found to heavily feed on long leaf pine seedlings, affecting the regeneration of this valuable key plant species.

The disruption of the island flora also directly impacts the island fauna dependent on those various plant communities for food, shelter, and nesting. Thousands of feral hogs roam the island, posing a danger to hikers and island visitors as well.

The Park Service acknowledges that all feral hogs should be removed from the island, but they have not implemented a plan to remove the hogs. Please act quickly to remove the feral hogs from Cumberland Island.

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