Conservation officers in the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) led an investigation for the last two years that concluded with arrest warrants being issued for a total of 16 people in Alabama, Florida and Mississippi.

Outdoor Alabama reports 13 Alabama residents, two Florida and one Mississippi were found illegally transporting, releasing or possessing feral pigs.

“Contrary to the law, some persons continue to trap pigs for live sale to others, and in some cases carry them across state lines,” Chief Enforcement Office Kevin Dodd told Outdoor Alabama. “We documented feral pigs being trussed up and transported in car trunks, dog boxing and back seats of vehicles for release elsewhere.”

WFF investigators focused on feral hogs being hunted, trapped and sales to determine the transporting or release of the hogs in Alabama, though hunting hogs is legal. What they found is an accepted culture among some that included the laws ignored.

“In some cases, pigs were purposefully mutilated by cutting off their ears or breaking out their teeth,” Dodd said. “This mutilation was done during the training and conditioning of hunting dogs. While the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources strongly supports lawful and humane hunting, it does not condone any activity that involves the live possession of feral hogs for the purpose of training dogs.”

Dodd told Outdoors Alabama the investigation reports much of the illegal transportation of feral swine is by individuals and not organized groups. He added WFF will continue its investigation and charge anyone found transporting, releasing or possessing live feral hogs.

“This is a prime example where one individual’s simple violation can negatively affect numerous others,” he said. “We will continue to do everything possible to eliminate this illegal activity.”