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Palm Coast Monday, Nov. 27, 2017 11 months ago

Wild hogs rip up Woodlands lawns, frustrating residents

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The city's animal control officers don't handle wild animals, but trappers can remove them.
by: Jonathan Simmons News Editor

Wild hogs are overrunning parts of the Woodlands neighborhood in Palm Coast, and locals are blaming nearby construction for disrupting their habitat and driving them into their yards.

"This construction and others on Colbert Road have disrupted many wildlife environments, and roaming herds of wild hogs are ravishing the lawns of many homes in the Woodland," Blackfoot Court resident Alberto Jones wrote in an email to the Palm Coast Observer. 

"Calls to every government agency have landed on deaf ears, and the construction company pretends to be an innocent bystander. Should homeowners be left, as some have indicated, with the responsibility of paying for trapping and removing these animals and redoing their lawns for no fault of their own?"

Wild hogs, which can grow as long as 6 feet and weigh more than 150 pounds, are an invasive nuisance species in Florida, notorious for ripping up lawns as they use their tusks to hunt for grubs. They were brought to the country by Spanish explorers — including, possibly, Hernando de Soto in 1539, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The city has received complaints about hogs in the Woodlands as nearby land has been cleared for development, but because the hogs are wild animals and Palm Coast's animal control officers only handle domestic species, city animal control officers can not remove them, city spokeswoman Cindi Lane said.

But they can legally be trapped and hunted year-round. 

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission maintains a list of wildlife trappers who work in Flagler County at public.myfwc.com/HGM/NWT/NWTSearch.aspx.

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