Breaking News
More () »

Wild hogs seen off J. Turner Butler Blvd causing damage to land

A viewer wrote in after seeing two hogs rooting off JTB and Hodges.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — On the eastbound side of JTB between Kernan and Hodges, the sod is all torn up, but it’s not from the construction down the road. It appears to be from wild hogs.

First Coast News viewer Max Zahn saw something new on his early morning drive. On the side of the road, there were two wild hogs. 

“They could get in the road and cause an accident!” Zahn said.

He says they’re causing damage along the side of the highway.

“Early one morning I was taking Betsy to The Arc and I saw two hogs!" he said. "I was just worried about the safety of people driving on JTB plus the damage that they’re doing rooting up all of the grass along the side. I don’t have an answer what to do. I don’t have a solution.”

This damage is easy to miss when you’re driving 65 mph towards the beach. It blends in to the nearby construction zone, but Zahn says he saw the hogs rooting. 

According to the Extension Foundation, "Feral hogs root to obtain food. Rooting breaks up and loosens the surface and near-surface layers of the soil column."

 According to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s video on wild hogs, the damage matches up. Spokesperson Lisa Thompson says wild hogs create property damage this way. 

Wild hogs are not protected in Florida and Thompson says “On private property with landowner permission, wild hogs may be trapped and hunted year-round during the day and night and no hunting license is required”

The side of the road is public property, but the land behind it isn’t. 

The damage runs alongside the Pablo Creek Preserve, which according to the city of Jacksonville is privately owned. The owners would be in charge of managing the hog population on their land.

As for why the hogs are moving closer to the highway, Zahn has a theory.

“I thought well with all this construction they’re losing their places to live and all that kind of stuff so they’re tearing up the side of the road," he said. 

Be on the lookout as you drive eastbound. Wild hogs can weigh more than 150 pounds. 

Before You Leave, Check This Out