Beware of the feral pigson July 23, 2012 @ 12:02 pm (Updated: 1:20 pm - 7/23/12 )
"Squeal on Pigs" was launched Monday with Idaho and Oregon.
Feral swine are identified as any pig not confined in fences, and their spread across the country is blamed for an estimated $1.5 billion in damage to crops, livestock, and wildlife. Federal officials estimate more than 5 million feral pigs are roaming the country and pose a disease risk to humans.
The Recreation and Conservation Office says there was a feral pig population reported on the Olympic Peninsula, but it's no longer there. Most of the pigs have been sighted in southern Washington.
The pigs came from Europe and Asia as domestic pigs, but after years of escape and intentional release, the pigs have become free-ranging swine. Not only are they destruction to crops and wetlands, the pigs produce four to eight babies per litter.
If you see a feral pig, the state wants you to call its hotline: 1-877-9-INFEST. The pigs vary in color in size, but are most commonly black. Their hair is long and course. Females weigh between 77-330 pounds. The males have four tusks and can be very sharp.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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