Giant hogs-for real? (Pt. 1)

Hogzilla.

That is the name bestowed upon a huge hog killed in 2004 by Chris Griffin on Ken Holyoak’s hunting preserve. As the story goes, the hog was 12 feet long and weighed 1,000 pounds.

This sensational story circulated on the Internet and become a media sensation with about half of the interested parties screaming “hoax” and the others amazed that a “wild” boar would get so big.

As noted in my latest book Hog Wild this story became such a sensation the National Geographic Society filmed an investigative documentary about it and exhumed the body. Their verdict was the hog actually weighed 800 pounds and was between 7.5 and 8 feet long, which is still humongous by wild hog standards. However, they also found through DNA testing the animal was a hybrid of a wild and domestic hogs, most likely a Hampshire.

This got me to thinking about the largest hogs I have seen on open range. The first was a huge sow crossing a dry creek bed in Burnet County between Austin and Llano. My father and I were headed toward our deer lease in Menard and spotted the animal just off Highway 71. We turned around to get a better look and spied the huge pig about 100 yards out climbing the creek banks then disappearing into the brush. We both agreed the hog was in the neighborhood of 500 pounds.

hoggy

The second gigantic hog I saw was many years later on my old deer lease in Newton County down a highline where I had been finding absolutely huge hog tracks. While scouting one day I glassed an acquaintance’s deer feeder on the edge of the highline and saw a bunch of small hogs, which were probably in the 50-pound range that at that range looked like ants. Then came what looked like a jeep only it was a hog. The little ones scattered and this behemoth began feeding which allowed me to watch him for a few minutes. Again, I would say the hog was somewhere in the 500-pound range, which among truly wild hogs is a giant.

But those hogs don’t match up to “Hogzilla” do they?

“Monster Pig” did though. That is the name the media gave to an alleged 1,051-pound hog killed by 11-year-old Jamison Stone at Lost Creek Plantation near Anniston, Alabama. He killed the hog with a .50 caliber handgun shooting the animal eight times causing a Hogzilla-like media sensation.

As noted in the highly detailed chapter on giant hogs in “Hog Wild” there were holes in the story from the beginning. The scale used to weigh the animal goes in 10-pound increments so a weight of 1,051-pounds would be impossible.

Find out more about this mysterious hog in the next edition of our blog.

Chester Moore, Jr.

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