Over the past five years, a wild hog has been pestering an East Texas man and his family.
Joe Clowers and his daughters call him “The Ghost" or "The Bush Beast.” They routinely place food out on food plots to attract deer and other wanted wildlife, but the Bush Beast often visits to steal a meal.
This weekend, Clowers was out hunting on his 14-acre property in Longview for some smaller wild hogs when he saw a large dark shadow. Clowers’ reaction, he tells us, was, “'Oh my gosh, it's him'… and I was able to make the shot!"
The Bush Beast's time was finally over. He weighed in at 416 pounds, about double the average wild hog’s weight.
Todd Long, the Gregg County Game Warden shared Clowers’s prize on the Gregg County Game Warden Facebook page. It has been shared over 3,000 times.
Warden Long says Clowers isn’t alone when it comes to nuisance hogs.
"Over the past four or five weeks, I’ve gotten more and more calls from landowners, from residents, claiming the hogs are coming into their yards, into their gardens. They've never seen this before. "
Warden Long says the increase in sightings relates to an increase in population.
“The hog populations have exploded; they continue to increase, not just in Texas, but all over the South."
Long says the solution is more hunters, which is why he posted about Clowers.
Clowers plans to European mount the Bush Beast’s skull, and the meat is being used as wild animal feed, but his largest prize is peace of mind.
“He is finished. He has made his final appearance. It is a relief more than anything else."
Clowers hopes the viral post will inspire young hunters to participate in activities organized by the Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife.
You can hunt hogs year 'round. You do need a license, but if you are protecting your property a license is not required.
Due to the over population, there is no bag limit.
Warden Long recommends hunters give their local Game Warden a courtesy call if they are hunting at night.