After a week stalking with my father-in-law we came to my parents. My dad was out stalking a few days earlier and saw a nice sounder of wild boar feeding on a spring rape field. So I was out the first evening and had a walk around the area. The field was bordering with a railway from one side, small woodland from the other side (this was where my dad saw the boar coming out) and winter rape from the third side. There was a high seat near the field and as it was still early, I sat there and waited. Nothing was going on apart from a young spiker roebuck and a couple of does feeding on the wheat field behind me. It was getting darker when I finally decided to go down and have a look just round the corner where my dad saw the pigs as this bit was not visible from the high seat.
When rape gets into flower, it often gets wild boar attention. The moment when it starts blooming but is yet not too high is the best moment to catch up with pigs. Early spring in case of winter rape and later on in early summer when spring rape is in that stage is my favourite time to stalk wild boar. It can be only a week before it is too high to see them clearly, but it is always a good idea to visit. The rape remains attractive to pigs also later on when they literally move in and sleep inside till harvest, but it is difficult to get them.
When I got round the corner, I immediately spotted a single boar. This one was not too big, looked like an average size at about 40kg. Single pig is usually not what we want at this time of year and restraint is advisable. It proved right this time as well and after a couple of minutes of glassing, piglets appeared out of nowhere… There were six of them and they were not staying that close to the sow, someone quick could have made a terrible mistake… But that’s how it is with wild boar. Spring and summer up to the harvest time is not the best time to shoot them and unless 100% sure about the sex, I never take the rifle off my shoulder.
I waited there for another few minutes when different pigs started coming out of the wood as my dad told me they would. But this were not the ones he saw. He saw nine larger boar with some piglets. These were only three animals and I could not see any piglets. They soon moved away from me, but the light was fading fast and I would not get anywhere near them before it would have been too dark to sex them and shoot. I left them for the next day.
I was there again following morning. The sow with six was in the very same spot, but no sign of the three pigs. I went to have a look around the corner as I thought I heard something in winter rape on the other side, but I could not see anything. I went back and filmed the sow for a bit, but the wind was not to my favour and she soon was off.
I was on the high seat in the evening, and as the day before and when it was getting dark I came down and went to see the bit between the wood and field where I saw the three boar the previous evening. When I got there, there was the sow coming out with the piglets and soon the three pigs came out of the wood. I knew they would go the same route as the day before, so decided to stalk them quickly. I made only a few steps when I heard some noise behind me and a few pigs ran out of the winter rape just under the high seat I sat 15 minutes ago! There were six of them, and soon came out another one. They mixed again a bit, some came back to the winter rape, some came out, when eventually two or three sows came out just under the seat with a tram of piglets… The six smaller pigs were closer to me and they now looked like yearlings in comparison to the sows further on. Soon one of the sows chased one of the smaller pigs away confirming my assumptions.
The sows were moving quickly to the centre of the field and the yearlings were feeding and following the sounder. I put the rifle of sticks and selected the smallest one. They were going away from me and the one I chose was obstructed by others, but soon it paused broadside clear off any other animal. I set the trigger and sent 173gr SP bullet off my old Brno ZKK 600 in 7×64 caliber. They all ran away, gathered in a tight group on the top of the field and soon disappeared…
I was blinded by the muzzle flash, but I saw the pig was there kicking. After a few seconds it all went quiet. I waited for a bit and approached the boar. This was a female yearling this time at about 25-30kg with the bullet entry just behind the shoulder.