Hunter stands by RSPCA action to kill pigs humanely
DUARINGA'S Aidan Neill-ballantine has hunted feral pigs since he was 17 years old.
The local farm hand doesn't do it for a blood sport, he does it to keep the wild animals off his 17,000 acre property and away from cattle feed lots.
But the RSCPA believes there are irresponsible and inexperienced pig hunters out there who are involved in what they've described as a "gruesome and illegal pig hunting culture" in Queensland.
As a result, the RSPCA are urging responsible pig hunters and members of the public to "dob in" any illegal behaviour they see, either in social media or in act, in an attempt to crack down on the inhumane killings of pigs.
Aidan, 23, said there was a right way and a wrong way to hunt feral pigs.
"Pigs are a big issue for property owners," he said.
"They get into crops, fences, contaminate feed lots for cattle and that's the reason we have to kill them. It's purely to keep the property under control.
"People who don't live on rural properties or have to deal with wild pigs themselves may not fully understand just how much of an issue they are but most pig hunters are doing it the legal and humane way because they're doing it for the right reasons. I usually go pig hunting two times a week and I run two to three dogs who've been trained and who wear the right protective equipment.
"I've got a bailing dog which just nips the pig in the rear and keeps the pig there until I get there where I'll either shoot it or stab it in the heart straight away."
Aidan said the pig hunters who were inexperienced and didn't know much about the legal way to hunt were giving pig hunting a bad name.
"There's a difference between needing to pig hunt and just doing it for a blood sport," he said.
"The RSPCA have to do their job in trying to protect animals but unfortunately they'll never be able to catch out the stupid people in the act unless it's through social media."
An RSPCA Queensland spokesperson said they understood the issue of wild pigs on properties and accepted that the feral animals needed to be culled.
"We accept that feral pigs are a pest species, there's no doubt about that and we accept they need to be culled but we're just urging hunters to do it humanely," the spokesperson said.
"All you have to do is google Queensland pig hunting and majority of the posts are of people doing exactly what they shouldn't be. We've come across photos and videos that display blantant animal cruelty by people who are just going pig hunting for a blood sport.
"Legally you're allowed to use dogs to flush out the pig but the pig has to be killed as humanely and quickly as possible, either by being shot or stabbed in the heart straight away. We're seeing people drive over pigs or allow for their dogs to tear them to pieces and that's not humane.
"We are urging the responsible pig hunters to dob in anyone who's not doing it in a legal and humane manner because it's extremely hard for us and the Government to police inhumane killings unless people tell us. There is now new offence which was brought in last year, it's a serious animal cruelty charge which carries a maximum penalty of seven years imprisonment."
It is estimated wild pigs cause up to $100 million in agricultural damage annually in Australia.