Firearms suppressors, often more commonly referred to as “silencers,” are in the news—and that’s great news for tactical hog hunters.
In Georgia, for example, the State Senate recently approved a bill to legalize the use of suppressors for hunters. While the bill applies to all hunting, State Senator John Bulloch (R-Ochlocknee), “said he sponsored the silencer-related Senate Bill 301 to help landowners deal with an overpopulation of feral hogs,” the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. “The silencers, he said, would help them get off more than one shot.”
The bill now moves onto the House for consideration.
Meanwhile, the Texas Parks and Wildlife submitted a request that suppressors be made legal for the hunting of all game animals. Currently, hogs, a non-game species, can be hunted with suppressors in Texas. The proposal is being considered by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission. And, in Indiana, another bill to allow hunters to use suppressors passed the State Senate Judiciary Committee 7 to 1, at the end of January, and went to the full Senate for a vote.
As tactical pig hunters know, a good suppressor can make all the difference. Just ask Josh Hill, 25, manager of the Abilene Indoor Gun Range, in Abilene, Texas. Hill uses a variety of suppressors on the different AR15’s he has tricked out for tactical hog hunting. Saving your hearing is the obvious reason for using suppressors, Hill says, but they actually help you do the job on the pigs, too.
“Once I had this line of pigs out in front of me,” Hill remembers. “I lined up the scope and dropped the last one in line, put one right in his ear hole. The one at the very front stopped and turned to look at the one that had just gone down, and I took him out in the ear hole, too! A third one stopped to look at the two that were down, like he was trying to figure out what was going on. I shot him through the shoulder. He gave out a good squeal, and the rest took off.”
“But, heck, I engaged three targets before they scattered!” Hill continues. “You could never do that un-suppressed.”
At the first sound of that first shot, hogs are usually going to start running. Fast and furiously, making those next shots that much harder.
“They usually scatter away from the noise, away from you,” Hill says. “But with a suppressor, they can’t read the noise as well. They’ll stand around and try to figure out where the shot came from, and give you follow up shots. I’ve had that happen more than once.”
The Abilene Indoor Gun Range began selling suppressors last year, and the demand’s been strong ever since. The shop offers Advanced Armament Corporation and Gem-Tech suppressors. Most buyers are hunters, though many recreational shooters have joined the ranks of suppressor users, too.
“A lot of hunters I know say, “Oh, heck, I don’t need a suppressor,” Hill says. “But let me tell you, once they shoot one, they’re hooked. The suppressors sell themselves. We keep suppressors in inventory at all times now, and they sell real steady.”
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The Abilene Indoor Gun Range
Advanced Armament Corporation