Pig hunting derby will help feed families

FERAL: Wild pigs roam a farm in Agat. Post file photo

The annual pig hunting derby, which started several years ago as an opportunity to reduce the feral pig population on Guam, will take on a larger role of helping families in need this year.

The Department of Agriculture is hosting the first Pig Hunting Derby of the year.

“It is an approach that aligns with our community values of having compassion for one another and stepping up to help our neighbors when we can,” Agriculture officials stated in a press release. “The derby will feed families, foster familial hunter development, and reduce our nuisance feral pig population.”

The island’s last derby was in December 2018. There were 89 hunters and runners who harvested 101 pigs.

Director Chelsea Muna Brecht said this year, Sen. Clynt Ridgell “came to us with the suggestion of holding a derby to help feed families.”

“We loved the idea, figured out how to make the COVID logistics work, set up other logistics with our partners and now we are set,” she stated.

Additionally, Speaker Tina Muña Barnes and Sen. Jose Terlaje will be helping the agency on registration and derby days.

Muna also noted that APL has offered a 40-foot refrigerated container for the harvest.

The press release notes the agency is working with mayors to distribute the meat to residents within their villages. Pigs will be distributed whole and unprocessed. Safe handling guidelines will be provided to families.

Residents who would like to accept a pig are asked to contact their respective mayor.

Derby registration forms will be available at the Agriculture website.

Safety briefings and registration will be held from 3-6 p.m. on Friday, May 29 at the Agriculture building in Mangilao. The safety briefings will also be held on the days of the derby.

On the days of the hunts, the derby check-in/out station will be open from 4:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Hunters without a current license will be issued a Special No-Cost License for the two-day event.

Regular hunting licenses also will be available for purchase at $15 each from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. at the agency’s two-story David Limtiaco building in Mangilao.

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