Plague of wild pigs has the US authorities squealing
LOCUST GROVE, Oklahoma (Reuters) - A few years ago, Mr Jim Vich would not have dreamed of setting up an elaborate trap to catch wild hogs.
But that was before Oklahoma was invaded by a plague of pigs that devour crops, uproot pastures, destroy wildlife habitats, spread disease to humans and animals, kill trees and even knock over cemetery stones.
"I started trapping them more or less in self-defence," said Mr Vich, 60, a livestock farmer in north-east Oklahoma. "They were tearing up my place."
Oklahoma is battling a wild pig problem that has spread across the United States. The pigs, evolved from introduced wild boars or from escaped domestic stock, are prevalent in 36 states and have been sighted in 47 states, according to the authorities who track their populations.