IF you read the forum
page on boardogs.com you'll see that some strange things can happen when
you chase pigs. There are so many variables that every now and then the
game throws up something you just couldn't have predicted. There are
scary spooks, freak weather conditions and bizarre blokes. But I haven't
come across much stranger than the Boomi boar whose most dangerous
weapon were not his tusks...but his tail.
were on the river near Boomi on the northern plains of NSW working a
heap of lignum country that held its fair share of pigs. I was running a
Butters bred wolfhound x mastiff bully type called Tom. A son of Wal, a
frighteningly hard finder whose chest was so scarred it looked like red
corduroy cloth, Tom was rough haired, gap toothed and as tough as nails.
He had also inherited his father's nose. Teamed with Tom was a dog I
picked up in Rockhampton called Strike, a bully x greyhound/coonhound.
He too could find, had plenty of ticker and was lightning fast
had a mate with me running a little bully x which I considered a
passenger but he loved it, so it was thrown in the mix. We already had a
few pigs in a crate back at the camp and to be fair to the little bully,
it had gone onto them all but had yet to set the world on fire with its
brains or its speed.
decided to drive out with the spotlight for a final run before
heading back to Moree and the chiller. The country was a mix of
cultivation and river grazing country dotted with lignum bushes and the
odd patch of regrowth scrub. Almost immediately we picked up a little
black and white boar coming off a sheep carcase. He was only 45kgs but
put his punches together beautifully. He tuned up the two bigger dogs
for a couple of seconds before they could pull him up.
didn't look good as we ran in, in the dark with bobbing torchlight
illuminating a path through the lignum, however, our worst fears weren't
realised. Still, we thought it might be better to cut our losses and aim for
the camp and later, town.
was on the way back that things got interesting. Tom jumped and flew
into a patch of regrowth about an acre in size. If he went like that, it
was definitely a pig and probably a good'un. Strike and the bully x had
missed the initial jump but quickly got with the program and dived off
into the dark with my mate and I trying to find them with the spottie.
The regrowth was thick and the light was useless so we grabbed our
torches and did our best to keep up.
then we heard Tom hit. It was a good boar and Tom had hit it hard. There
was a hell of a noise, a mix of growls, grunts...and then a bark.
"What the..." Tom never barked. This didn't look good. Then we
heard Strike hit the hog and the din went up a few decibels. It was
bedlam. Running through the regrowth was like something I later saw on
the Blair Witch Project. Unpleasant country full of unpleasant goings
on. Running hard while trying not to lose an eye we came to a little
clearing with the torches shining on a big boar, which was spinning like
a washing machine and throwing off Tom and Strike like they were toys.
"Jesus Christ," I said to my mate, "keep your bloody wits
about you, this is the big time.
was then we saw the little bully. It was lying on the edge of the
clearing stretched out and lifeless. My mate's heart was broken and he
headed for his dog. "Fuck that, help me here or we'll have two more
dead in a second." This snapped him out of his state and we both
closed on the fight.
bloody pig had no ears, and he'd learnt a thing or two from that incident as well. Tom and
Strike would fly in and grab him and be shouldered off as the big
bastard spun. These were hard-core dogs and this boar was belting them
was now or never. I was pretty well freaked but had no choice. I dropped
my torch in front of the boar to distract him as the dogs hit again. He
spun slightly away from me and in I went. I grabbed his tail and hung on
as he realised the game was up and stepped around in an attempt to get
rid of this latest tormentor. There was no way he was going to get that
chance. I grabbed a hind leg and then a second, lifting them before
dropping them sharply while crossing his legs and flipping him on his
side. The dogs were furious and it took a little to convince these
normally well mannered hounds that they were now not allowed to square
up with the pig while he was pinned on the deck.
mate took the opportunity to head for his dog. It was time to mourn his
loss in the way most of us have at one time or another. He was upset and
angry and frustrated so you can imagine his surprise when the dog lifted
its head. "Shit, he's still alive." I had the pig tied and ran
to the bully. Not only was he alive but he was unmarked. He had been
unconscious, but why, how?
to the pig and the answer was obvious. When I'd grabbed the tail I was
in such a committed state I had failed to notice something I had never
seen before, nor since. This boar, like all boars, loved to wallow and
through the years he had picked up the usual coating of dried black mud
that can cause so many shooters, so many problems. What was unusual,
however, was his tail. At the very end of his tail the mud from a
hundred wallows had collected into a dry, hard ball of about a kilogram
(just more than two pounds) weight. As the boar spun his tail had
collected the hapless bully and knocked him clean out.
at the chiller we unloaded seven pigs from 24kgs to 63. The big boar
went 86kgs dressed and we picked up the cheque although at least part of
it was under false pretences. At least one kilo of the weight was in the
knockout ball on the tail but we figured we deserved the extra cash for
the wear and tear on the dogs with Tom and Strike nursing a bunch of
rips and punctures and heading for the vet while the bully nursed a
headache and a bit of injured pride.