Waiting For A Trophy By: Cody Weiser
I recently had a discussion with a fellow hog hunter and friend over a hunt that he had been on. He told me of how he had planned to harvest a boar that could be mounted but became frustrated early in the hunt and decided to settle for a few average size meat hogs. It seems the temptation to take a shot on hogs that presented themselves was too much for him to handle. I could not help but think that maybe if he had just waited a bit longer, he might have a totally different and more exciting story to tell.
Restraint and patience are both absolutely necessary if you plan on taking a trophy wild boar home. Before the hunt even begins, you must decide if you will be searching for meat or a trophy and hunt accordingly. If a giant boar is what you are after, then you need to stick to a game-plan and wait on the boar. You must realize that just because you have a shot opportunity, you do not have to take it. I find it humorous that when someone is hunting for a trophy buck he or she will wait for days, allowing multiple deer to pass, in pursuit of a muy grande’ buck. However take the same hunter looking for a great boar. When the first pig comes into view, he is blasted before his whole body can exit the brush! Who’s to say what the hunter would have seen if he or she had just waited and let the young hogs walk. If you want a big tusker, then you should have the discipline not to shoot until you see one.
Wild hog sounders are made up of many breeding aged sows along with juvenile hogs. Wild swine do not have a well defined rut period, so it is safe to assume that some of the sows in the group are going to be in estrus. If only one out of twenty sows in the sounder are in heat, then you can be assured there is a boar hot on her trail. Many hunters believe that if a boar does not enter an opening or feeding area with a sounder, then he is not coming. Hunters will allow the sounder to enter into view and only wait two or three minutes before committing on a meat hog. This is a crucial mistake when trophy boar hunting. On many occasions, I’ve let a sounder enter and leave a feeding area to later have a boar or even a bachelor group come in on the same trail looking for sows. Had I taken a shot on the sounder, I would have ruined my opportunity to view the boars.
When bachelor groups enter clearings, it is also beneficial to wait for a few minutes. My wife and I were hunting a box blind together one evening when a bachelor group of boars began to creep out of the brush line. The fourth boar that entered was very nice and my wife whispered that she wanted to take him. It was going to be her first, so I did not hesitate in encouraging the shot. As soon as the rifle sounded, a brute of a boar crashed out of the woods and dashed across the right-of-way. My wife ended up with a good boar, but I realized what a little more patience could have netted.
Boars that are trailing sows usually do not hang around for very long, especially if the sows have already moved on. To slow the boars down you can create multiple "hot spots" on the ground in the opening you are hunting. This can be accomplished by cutting a sponge into three pieces. Place each piece of sponge on the ground in the same general area, approximately 20-30 feet apart from each other. Secure the sponge pieces to the ground by piercing them with a small stick or nail that you press into the dirt. Pour sow-in-heat scent on each sponge so it is completely saturated. A boars that picks up on this scent will check each sponge as he is traveling through the area. This will assist in stalling the boar and should give you ample time to view the boar and make a clean shot if you decide to do so.
Patience and restraint are definitely two main ingredients that will lead you to a trophy boar hog. The ability to let hogs pass without disruption will certainly prove to be a factor in your ability to see large boars. This is sure to keep both you and your taxidermist happy.