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House gives final passage to feral hog bill

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP)--The Oklahoma House has given final passage to legislation that authorizes hunters to use helicopters to kill feral hogs.

The House on May 4 voted 92 to 4 for the Senate-passed bill and sent it to Gov. Brad Henry for his signature.

Supporters say the feral hog population is growing along the Red River in far southern Oklahoma as well as other areas of the state. The hogs root up crops as their herds spread, devastating rural farms and posing a possible health risk.

The bill's author, Rep. Don Armes of Faxon, says 20 other states have similar programs to manage feral hog populations.

The Texas Department of Agriculture last year awarded a $1 million contract to reduce the number of hogs there, estimated at about 2 million.

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