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First Northern Territory Boars

First Northern Territory Boars – Matty
April 2015

Having lived up the Cape for the past 4 years it was time I loaded up Bo, Dave the Quad bike and moved to the NT to match the team up against some of the nastiest and biggest boars that Australia has to offer. Any one who has hunted NT will tell you the Boars here are some of the best you will encounter. Conditions are perfect for the pig population up in the Territory so its no surprise that many hunters move to theNT in pursuit of that trophy boar and a tale to tell their mates.After a Saturday afternoon out on the water chasing some barra I got back into mobile reception and had a message from Greg Fenwick from HD hunting supplies asking me if I was keen for a hunt in the morning. Problem being I was a few hours from home, it was already 9pm at night and I would have to get home wash the boat unload all my gear the pack all my hunting gear and meet Greg at 5am. But as you know if you turn down a hunt you rarely get asked twice, been taken out on a hunt with a local lad like Greg was an opportunity not to be missed.

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So after a couple of hours sleep Bo, Dave and myself were in the ute and heading out to meet Greg. Greg took us to one of his spots, we unloaded his Kawasaki Teryx buggy and set off in pursuit of some pigs. Now I am not use to being the passenger and having some one take me out on a hunt but I must say it was an absolute pleasure and although Greg was a pretty quiet bloke to begin with I got the impression he was mad keen on hunting. Greg has an awesome set up his Teryx buggy is custom fitted with a dog cage that has separate compartments so he can run two teams of dogs. He can remove the doors and run one dog finding and the others boxed. Or he can remove all the doors and have all hands on deck. Either way it allows him to have ultimate control over his hounds. And it was interesting to see how a fellow pig hunting enthusiast runs his set up.

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It was a slow start to the morning but Greg had hit this spot last weekend and cleaned up a dozen or so pigs so we weren’t expecting it to be as easy this weekend. Greg had saved a few new spots for us to hit later on in the day. The first few pigs we nailed were all mob pigs, good for the dogs to warm up on. We headed down to a paper bark swamp with amazing looking country we new it was only a matter of time before we spotted a big boar. And it didn’t take long before a nice big boar popped up out of a wallow, he was a big looking bugger with an impressive set of nuts on him he was trotting into a thick part of the paper bark swamp in no real hurry. We dropped Bo and it was a matter of seconds before she had this big fella bailed up, no more than 80m from the buggy. Greg got up close to the action and I released Dave from the Buggy. Greg was within 20m of Bo and this boar and he still couldn’t get a good look as it was really thick going, Dave steam rolled in and we heard the commotion as Dave hit this big brute head on. By the time I came running in with the camera the boar had broken and was on the move. Pretty unusual I thought, Dave doesn’t normally let them get too far.

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I checked the tracker and it wasn’t long before the dogs were both Tree’d about 200m away. We ran back to the buggy and heading around the thick patch to where the dogs were. I was pretty pumped for my first boar in the territory and was hoping this boar was going to go close to the magic 100kg mark. Unfortunately we ran in and the dogs had a sow pulled up. It was a bit embarrassing, first good boar for the day and Bo and Dave got dusted. We figured that after the hit up the boar must have broken and as the dogs were chasing him they hit the sow. It wouldn’t have surprised me if the boar was cunning enough to use the sow to throw the dogs off, I’ve seen it before. I was a bit disappointed with the dogs but I couldn’t expect too much from them after a 4 month lay off with the move from the Cape.

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We pushed on and it wasn’t long before another good boar popped up in-front of us. Greg upped it in the buggy and dropped his team on the scent, by the time we got back in the buggy and chased the dogs down they had pulled up a solid NT boar with some nice tusk! We were stoked we had been putting in the hard yards all morning and we got a good boar. We got a few photos gave the hounds a drink and pushed on, we decided to head towards a creek Greg has seen a huge mob of 100 the weekend previous. But before we could get there another Boar popped up out of some long grass in front of us. We let Dave and Bo go and hoped for the best, Dave must have been a bit over excited and took off in the wrong direction but Bo must have caught a glimpse of the Boar and was heading in the right direction. It took her about 200m and she had pulled the Boar up and had him in a hard bail not moving an inch, but Dave was no where to be seen! Greg released two of his hounds and I caught good a solid hit up on Camera. Gregs two dogs hit hard and didn’t give this boar and inch. Dave had heard the commotion by this stage and had come in for a chew. The game was over for this boar.

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We gave the dogs a drink and headed for this creek, just as we were approaching the creek, Greg was just saying to me how this is where he had seen the 100 pigs the weekend before. And just like Greg had had it pre planned earlier a big mob broke from the creek in a scene that was almost to good to be true. We could see one good boars amongst them but they were beating us to the fence line so we stopped the buggy and dropped all 5 dogs and hoped for the best. We ran in after the dogs about 200m and they had pulled up the main boar, great result, and he was a crack, good solid boar with a nice set of hooks. We decided not to run the dogs on as we were close to some water which could have had some lizards in there and we were a while away from the buggy.So we loaded up the hounds and decided to head for home. As we were punching through some country to find the main track home a boar in the middle of no where was trotting along in the open, with some cattle, it doesn’t get much better than that! Greg upped it and split the boar from the cattle we released Bo and Dave again who in the commotion hit the ground and took off in the wrong direction. The 4 month lay off and a new hunting style had sent these two dogs back a fair bit but we continued to chase the boar in the buggy and got some awesome footage of the boar chasing us in the buggy, then Greg dropped his dogs who didn’t miss a beat. Another solid NT boar had fallen to Greg’s pack of hounds.

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Time was getting on but after a run of 4 good boars in quick succession we would have both happily continued on, but we were running of light. And all good things come to and end, so we headed back to the ute with some tired dogs and some good footage for the next DVD. It was an awesome experience going out with Greg, I always find I learn a lot when I get to go out with someone who is as passionate about hunting as I am. And Greg really knew his stuff, being a mechanic by trade, having 20+ years experience hunting and fishing the territory and running a hunting and hardware store he had some good yarns and was very knowledgeable. Fingers crossed I get asked to come out for another hunt!

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