A Department of Natural Resources director’s order listing sporting swine as an invasive species took effect over the weekend on Oct. 8, making it illegal to possess the animals in Michigan.

“Absent a regulatory program in Michigan law for sporting swine facilities, the invasive species order is being put into effect,” said DNR Director Rodney Stokes.

Stokes said active enforcement of the invasive species order will not start prior to April 1, 2012, with compliance visits to swine shooting and breeding facilities planned after that date.

Sporting swine facilities can use the next six months to schedule hunts to reduce the population of sporting swine on their properties. Facilities still in possession of sporting swine on April 1, 2012, may face violations and fines.

The DNR acted to list sporting swine as an invasive species to help stop the spread of invasive swine across the State to eliminate the disease risk they pose to humans, domestic pigs and wildlife, and to prevent damage to agricultural and other lands. The state is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to eradicate feral swine. Legislation was also passed last year allowing people with any valid hunting license to shoot feral swine on public land and on private land with the permission of the landowner.

For more information on feral swine in Michigan, go to www.michigan.gov/feralswine.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.

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