Q: I stalk deer and have a .30-06 rifle. I would like to shoot wild boar but can’t afford to go to Europe. I have been offered some boar shooting in Savernake Forest. Is it legal for me to accept?
Wild boar are now establishing themselves in viable populations in several parts of southern England, so providing you are shooting with the permission of the landowner, it is quite legal. Boar do not have any close season but should be treated with the same respect that you would any quarry.
Do not shoot one with young. BASC recommends that rifles chambered for the .270 cartridge are the minimum that should be used for hunting boar. Also, proper hunting ammunition loaded with expanding bullets should be used on the grounds of safety and humanity.
You will need to look at the condition on your firearm certificate very carefully to ensure that it allows you to hunt boar. If your certificate says (as it should) that you may shoot “any lawful quarry”, you can shoot boar. If it does not, ask the local police licensing department to have this condition added. There is no charge for this. If you are lucky enough to shoot a boar, treat the carcase in the same way as you would that of a deer.
Wild boar are fearless and can be ferocious, especially females with young. They need to be treated with respect and caution. I think they are among the noblest beasts of the chase. It is always as well to have an eye on a potential escape route while you are hunting in case one kicks up rough.