Feral hog populations continue to explode across the United States, especially in states like Texas and Florida. Just a single large sounder can destroy a lawn or completely wipe out a farmer's crops in a single night. As a result, more hog hunters than ever are looking to purchase a firearm that they can dedicate exclusively to hogs, although many of our picks on today's list are also dynamite firearms for a bevy of other big game species.
Today we're giving you our top picks for the best guns for feral hogs. We tried to pick a variety of firearm types and calibers to fit the styles of just about any hunter. So, no matter if you like a rifle, a shotgun, or a large handgun, there's sure to be something on this list that will fit your needs. No matter what you choose, these hog guns will help you make a serious dent in the pig population.
Remington Model 700
It's hard to go wrong with a bolt-action classic. The Model 700 is well-known as one of the best deer hunting rifles ever made. Remington still builds several different variants in different chamberings. Anything in 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Winchester, or 300 Blackout should do the job on hogs quite nicely. If you're hunting from long range, go with something like the 700 SPS with a 24-inch barrel. If you're hunting in denser brush, go with one of the tactical models with a 16.5 or 20-inch barrel.
The 700 is available in a variety of finishes and stock configurations. Most have synthetic furniture and a matte blued finish, although there is a 700 SPS stainless model. We like the 700 for the biggest of wild boars where shot placement is key for getting through that tough hide. The downside to this option is that your follow-up shots aren't going to be as fast. The 700 is more of a precision instrument when you need to take a specific hog out permanently.
Mossberg 500 Flex
The Mossberg 500 is an excellent all-around hunting shotgun, but the 500 Flex seems like it was given a bevy of features that makes the 12-gauge shotgun ideal for hogs. It comes in at 7.5 pounds, has an overall length of 48.25 inches and starts with a 28-inch vent rib barrel with an accu-set choke standard. Although there are other variants with different barrels. The reason we put the Flex model on the list is because this model is built to be quickly customized without the use of tools. You can quickly add a low power scope, red dot sight, pistol grip stock or nicer recoil pad in a hurry. You can even change out barrels quickly if you want to add a deer hunter's slug barrel for a little extra punch.
For the ultimate versatility, you can hunt wild pigs in an open area with the deer slug barrel in the morning and then put a shorter barrel on to use with buckshot in a brushy area in the afternoon. The downside to any shotgun is a reduction of range. This is a firearm you're mostly going to use on hogs at distances of 50 yards and less, especially with buckshot. Shots beyond that with anything other than a sabot slug is going to risk wounding and scattering the animals further. The plus side is this shotgun cycles quickly, allowing you to get quick follow-ups or to take out additional hogs in a sounder.
Marlin 1895 Trapper
Chambered in .45-70 Government, the Marlin 1895 has plenty of stopping power for larger pigs. This is a classic hunting rifle. It comes in at 7.1 pounds, has a 34.25-nch overall length, and a 16-inch cold hammer forged stainless steel barrel with 1:20 rate of twist. The stock and forend are a handsome black laminate making this rifle look as good as it shoots. This rifle has adjustable skinner sights in the rear and a blade in the front. The barrel is also threaded, allowing you to add a muzzle break or a suppressor.
Because of the short overall length, this is a classic brush gun, and is ideal for wild hogs within 100 to 150 yards. Those .45-70 rounds aren't easy on the shoulder, but they are going to put a real hurt on even the largest of feral hogs. The short length of this rifle makes it quick to shoulder swing while following a running hog. It also cycles very fast thanks to an oversized loop lever. The only real downside is the capacity is only 5+1 rounds, so it's not a gun you're going to use hog hunting for larger sounders.
After Ruger acquired Marlin recently, the engineers went back in and made some modern tweaks to the classic design of this rifle, making it even better than before. This is a very versatile hunting rifle that can be used for a variety of situations beyond just hogs. It's not cheap though. Expect to pay around $1,300 depending on the retailer.
Taurus Raging Hunter
Handguns aren't the most popular firearms for wild boar hunting, but they can certainly do the job. The Taurus Raging Hunter is ideal since it's offered in larger calibers like .357 and .44 Magnum, which will do a ton of damage to any problematic hogs. They also chamber it for larger calibers like 460 S&W and 454 Casull, although those might be a little overkill for pig hunting. At least if you are hoping to harvest any meat from the animal.
Barrel lengths for this firearm vary from five to eight inches. Go with a longer barrel if you want more accuracy at a distance. The shorter barrels are better for up close and personal encounters in thick areas. Most of the Raging Hunter variants have a stainless steel barrel and alloy steel frame. They are big, and they are heavy. That's why we like the Raging Hunter more for the hunter who's looking for more of a challenge dropping larger, tough animals than the hunter who's out for population control on lots of smaller feral pigs.
These pistols are usually double action/single action and come with adjustable rear sights and fixed fronts standard. However, most also have scope rails for mounting optics. These handguns are not cheap. Expect to pay around $1,000 minimum for one new.
Weatherby Vanguard Synthetic
The Vanguard may be the best hog hunting gun for hunters who want a quality firearm without breaking the bank too badly. This rifle has an extremely ergonomic Monte Carlo Griptonite stock and comes in at about 44 inches overall length depending on which caliber you choose. We'd go with .308 Winchester or 6.5 Creedmoor for most hog hunting scenarios. These rifles come in at about 7.5 pounds and feature a 24-inch cold hammer forged barrel.
Weatherby builds these guns with a one-piece machined bolt body that is fluted and fully enclosed. These things just cycle beautifully. There's extra ergonomics in the right hand palm swell and adjustable two stage trigger that breaks crisply every time. Weatherby backs these rifles with a sub-MOA shot guarantee from a cold barrel using premium factory ammo. That's one of the most heavily praised aspects of this rifle, the accuracy. It shoots incredibly tight groups for a fraction of what other more expensive rifles cost. The Vanguard starts at around $500, leaving plenty of wiggle room to add a quality optic.
READ MORE: THE GREATEST BROWNING SHOTGUNS ON THE MARKET
Enjoy the outdoors?
Sign up for daily stories delivered straight to your inbox.