News

Wild pigs terrorize Atlanta suburb

Wild pigs terrorize Atlanta suburb

This undated photo provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services shows a group of trapped feral pigs in South Dakota. Photo: Associated Press

By David Beasley

ATLANTA (Reuters) – Wild pigs have descended on a suburban Atlanta neighborhood where they are scaring children, making a general nuisance of themselves, and acting as they if they own the place.

One large specimen was sighted on Monday morning rummaging through garbage it had strewn across Taneisha Danner’s front yard in Lithonia, an area about 19 miles east of downtown Atlanta.

It then trotted into the backyard, taking a nap before returning with three other pigs from a patch of nearby woods, Danner told Reuters on Tuesday.

“This is their home,” Danner joked. “We’re just visiting.”

She said the animals were no laughing matter for neighborhood children, however, noting that some were now afraid to leave the safety of their homes.

“My children are even afraid to be downstairs, worried that he (the pig) could come through the door,” Danner said.

Descendents of wild boar, the feral pigs are a particular pest in rural Georgia and notorious for damaging farmer’s crops, said Charlie Killmaster, a deer and feral hog biologist with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

There are so many hogs that hunting season has been flung wide open for wild pigs on private land, he said, adding that it was still fairly rare for them to show up in suburban neighborhoods.

The population of one of the most invasive and destructive wild animals in the United States has grown rapidly in recent years, however. What was once a largely rural problem has blighted suburban areas in other states as well.

The hogs can be dangerous to humans if they are cornered or if their young are threatened, Killmaster said.

“There is some level of danger associated with them,” he added. “But in nearly all cases, steering clear of them is all you need to do.”

Danner said she had complained to local authorities about the hogs and was told they were trying to find a private trapper to remove them.

Recent Headlines

yesterday in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: April 17

nirvana

A look back at Hollywood's biggest headlines.

yesterday in Local Sports

Blazers defeat Clippers 110-102 

Portland Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts calls in a play against the Atlanta Hawks in the second half of their NBA basketball game Thursday, March 27, 2014, in Atlanta. Portland won 100-85.

The Trail Blazers downed Clippers 110-104 in the regular-season finale, with both teams resting key players in advance of the playoffs.

yesterday in Local Sports

Rangers rally for 2 in 9th to beat Mariners 3-2 

Flags of some of the teams of the American League west division fly at Safeco Field during a baseball game between the Seattle Mariners and the Oakland Athletics, Saturday, April 12, 2014, in Seattle. Flags for the Seattle Mariners, the Oakland Athletics, the Los Angeles Angels, the Texas Rangers, and the Houston Astros, are shown.

The Texas Rangers scored two unearned runs in a two-out rally against Fernando Rodney, beating the Seattle Mariners 3-2

yesterday in Local Sports

Sidney Rice agrees to terms with Seahawks 

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Sidney Rice looks for the call against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz.

The Seattle Seahawks and wide receiver Sidney Rice have agreed to terms on a deal.

yesterday in Sports

Jets sign former Titans RB Chris Johnson 

Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (28) walks off the field before an NFL football game against the Houston Texans Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn.

In a text message to The Associated Press, Johnson confirmed it was a two-year deal.