In Wise County, hog hunting is serious.
It's so serious that the winners of the annual Wise County Hog Contest must pass a polygraph test before collecting their prize.
"You just want to make sure everybody is following the rules," said Trey Hawkins, a Decatur funeral home director who organizes the event with Tres Poynor of Bridgeport.
In fact, the hog hunt's website rules state: "if you have legitimate proof a team is cheating, please let us know, but no need to keep calling every day."
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Under the rules, a hunter must have his hog weighed within 24 hours of the kill at a designated location in Bridgeport. The hog doesn't have to be killed in Wise County — one team this year came from Childress, about 180 miles away.
This year's winner weighed 332.1 pounds and will result in a $11,400 prize to the winning team . That's 50 percent of the entry fees collected. Each team paid $100 to participate in the statewide hunt.
The runner-up, which weighed 306 pounds, will get $6,840 and third place, which weighed 304 pounds, will get $2,280.
Since the contest began seven years ago, the all-time winner came in at 399 pounds, in 2013.
Hawkins said the hog with the longest cutters — or bottom tusks — came in at 7 inches, which he said are among the longest ever measured on a wild hog.
The rules are simple: No trapping, no dogs and no hunting from a helicopter or in a high-fenced area. The hunting period ran from Feb. 6 to March 6.
On the polygraph matter, Hawkins said that all of the winners from previous years have passed. This year's winners are unofficial because none have yet taken the polygraph tests.
"We're wanting this to be a legitimate hunt," Hawkins said.
Hawkins said 228 teams entered this year's hunt, up from 158 a year ago.
Despite the growth in popularity of the contest, Hawkins said the hogs keep multiplying.
"There are so many hogs to kill each year it's unbelievable," Hawkins said.
Bill Hanna: 817-390-7698, @fwhanna