Coyotes, hogs displaced by flood on the move

Published 11:07 am Tuesday, August 29, 2017

By Chester Moore Jr.

Leader Outdoors

The incredible amount of rain produced by Hurricane Harvey is causing tremendous stress on wildlife along the coastal marshes of Southeast Texas.

There are two animals in particular that are extremely abundant in the Port Arthur/Beaumont/Orange area and also in much of the Houston metro area.

Those are coyotes and feral hogs.

Most of the time coyotes are not a problem for people but when frightened and hungry threats can go up. Coyotes are also a rabies vector and can carry distemper so caution is wise for pet owners.

If you are in an impacted area consider the following to avoid coyote contact:

*Keep garbage inside or at least keep the lid on your cans.

*Feed your dogs and cats inside.

*Do not attempt to feed coyotes or any stray dog you might come across. Some have problems distinguishing dogs and coyotes.

*If your dog has to go walk it on a leash and keep walks short and away from any wooded areas or cover.

All of the area around Taylor’s and Hildebrandt Bayous along the 73 and 365 corridor have a a tremendous amount of coyotes as does the low lying areas along the Sabine River in Orange. Be especially mindful of these animals if you live in these zones.

These areas are also home to lots of feral hogs.

Feral hogs can be much more aggressive than coyotes especially when stressed and may be brazen enough to walk through parks, neighborhoods and yards as if they own the place. Last year’s flooding on the Sabine River showed that as some huge hogs were captured on video in downtown Orange.

If you see a hog during these flooding conditions chances are it it not someone’s pet.

And while they are not out to get anyone, they have no problem letting someone feel their wrath if cornered. Do not approach any hog at any time.

I have been surveying areas impacted in Orange County and have seen alligators and snakes in drainage ditches but we are sort of used to that here. We know that floods bring out reptiles.

One note on alligators is that if you see a say 3-5 foot alligator in a ditch or pond there is no need for alarm. Our local game wardens are tied up with all kinds of things right now and small gators are not enough threat to justify a call.

Save that for the larger ones and maybe one that ends up in your garage or something.

The human tragedy of this storm should take priority but wildlife is paying a price too and if we use these tips we can stay out of trouble and keep the animals from harm as well.

(To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at