Those wild and crazy hogs...

(October 28, 2003) — (Mountain Home-AP) -- The U-S Forest Service says wild pigs are becoming a problem in the Ozark Mountain woods. Rhea Rylee, a district biologist for the forest service, says the increasing population of wild hogs in north Arkansas has raised concerns about damage being done to plants that grow under the forest canopy. So the forest service and the state Game and Fish Commission are trapping the animals to get the population under control. Among the species that Rylee is concerned about are morel mushrooms as well as some of the most sensitive plants, including the flowering Southern lady slipper orchid and wild ginseng. The agencies are using three large animal traps to capture the hogs. Twenty-two have been captured during the past two months. Chris Majors of the Game and Fish Commission says other pigs have been shot by enforcement officers. He says 11 of the trapped pigs are being held in a pen, and most of the others were turned over to needy families for butchering or raising in pens.