Alabamans will now be able to hunt coyotes and feral hogs at night.
Gov. Kay Ivey recently signed a new law that will allow the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to create an official season for hunting the two types of animals at night, according to an announcement.
Previously, hunting coyotes and feral hogs at night required a special permit, which was only issued to landowners or someone they specifically delegate to hunt the creatures. Now, hunters will be able to buy a $15 license instead of going through the process of getting a permit.
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The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources estimates that feral swine cause $50 million in private property damage in the state every year. The department also said feral swine damage agriculture and wildlife habitats throughout the state and across the South.
Coyotes have significant impacts on Alabama’s white-tailed deer populations, according to officials.
Meanwhile, coyotes have significant impacts on white-tailed deer populations in the state, the department said.
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Despite the new license and season for hunting coyotes and feral swine, officials aren’t expecting to control their populations with hunting licenses alone.
“We don’t think this is the silver bullet,” Chuck Sykes, the director of the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, said in a statement.. “We’re not saying going hunting at night is going to eliminate the hog problem, because it’s not. What we are doing is giving people more opportunity to remove more pigs and coyotes if they choose to do so. It is another tool to reduce the number of predators.”
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According to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the 2021 season for hunting coyotes and feral swine at night is expected to begin on July 1 and end on Nov. 1. However, the season for 2022 is expected to begin in February and run through November.