890-lb. Johnson County Pig Is Humongous

GON Staff | October 26, 2007

Posing with the 890-lb. Johnson County pig: (Left to right) Marshall Powell, Cameron Williford, Clint Rowland, A.J. Corsey, Aaron Williford and Bryan Dye. Not pictured is Tammy Bell who was along for the hunt and took the photo.

There are pigs, then there are big pigs, and then there is another class called humongous. The pig Marshall Powell and his hunting buddies killed in Johnson County falls into the upper end of that humongous-hog category. The pig, killed near Wrightsville in an Oconee River swamp, weighed 890 pounds. By any designation, that’s a truck-load of pig.

Marshall said that on Tuesday, Oct. 8 he was on family property when he ran across the hog standing in the middle of a woods road.

“He was so big I didn’t know what it was at first,” said Marshall. He tried to follow the pig but could not locate it again. “I have some friends who have hog dogs, and I went and got them,” he said.

At about 9:30 that night, Marshall, six friends and three dogs returned to the area. It took about an hour for the dogs to air scent the pig.

“They bayed it on a river-swamp flat near the Oconee River,” said Marshall. “But it got loose, and at first it ran at us, then took off.”

When they saw the size of the pig they were dealing with, the plan to catch the hog was dropped in favor of of the plan to shoot it, and at the next opportunity that’s what they did.

“I don’t take credit for killing the pig,” said Marshall. “It was definitely a group effort.”

The pig fell near a 4-wheeler track, and they were able to drag the hog out. It took a tractor to lift it into a truck bed.

The hog was taken to Roach Manufacturing in Wrightsville where it was weighed on certified scales. The pig, which measured 7 feet long from its snout to the base of its tail, weighed in at a whopping 890 pounds.

The humongous pig was almost certainly an escapee from a feed lot somewhere in the area. Game biologists say life-long free-ranging hogs rarely exceed 300 or 400 pounds simply because they can’t find enough food to eat to maintain a high body weight.

“Nobody had seen the hog before, and nobody knows where it came from,” said Marshall. “It was way back in a river swamp, and judging from the rooting, it had been there a long time.”

The Johnson County hog’s front foot measured nearly 4 1/2-inches across.

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