Two Louisiana engineers built a $10,000 see-in-the-dark, pig-hunting plane in their spare time and have taken the necessity of pig hunting to a whole new level, no pun intended. Feral hogs have become one of the nations most destructive pests and expand their territory to new states each year. Even northern states are reporting feral hogs on public land. Nate Anderson has amassed a terrific post with video you won’t believe from daylight shots from the drone to nighttime hunts with infrared cameras and lots of firepower. If you like action, you’ll love this:
Wild hogs have become a huge problem in places like Louisiana, rooting up fields in their quest for food and generally being extraordinary 200 pound pests. Given their size, smarts, and tenacity, feral hogs can be hard to kill—and that’s when you can even find them amid all the vegetation. So how do you deal with the problem? If you’re like electrical engineers Cy Brown and James Palmer, you strap a $5,000 thermal imaging camera to a remote-controlled airplane, then fly the thing around farmers’ fields on weekend evenings until you spot a hog. Then you shoot it from the ground with a night vision-equipped rifle.
Brown and Palmer call their homemade, pig-hunting drone the Dehogaflier. The drone itself runs around $10,000 with all the gear attached, and it can feed live video to a screen on the ground, where the operator flies the plane with a joystick. It sounds expensive, but it can be far cheaper than hog hunting using other methods. (Hog hunting from helicopters is a real thing you can do; its practitioners even use industry-specific puns like “Black Hawg Down.”)