The 150-pound boar hit the ground kicking and squealing wildly. Mark Falgoust’s 150-grain .30-06 smashed into the neck, perfectly placed to minimize meat damage.
The morning ended perfectly: Meat in the pot.
The hunt had been well-planned. Earlier that morning, the property owner, Pastor Mike Millé of White Dove Fellowship, briefed the two hunters on what they could expect, both on the lay of the land and what the hogs would likely do when they became aware they were being hunted.
He especially cautioned Bill Borges, who would work as the brush beater and driver, about one corner of the property where several aggressive sows with litter were holed up. Borges, president of New Orleans Fish House that serves as a major seafood supplier to Louisiana’s restaurants, is an experienced hunter and took Millé’s cautions seriously.
His friend Mark Falgoust, executive chef of New Orleans’ Grand Isle restaurant, was to serve as the primary shooter atop a tall tripod stand overlooking the hogs’ probable escape route.
The two men are friends, both are avid hunters and fishermen, and both are passionate about pigs. Borges is an addicted deer hunter wants to see them all dead; Falgoust is an addicted foodie and chef, who wants to see them all cooked.
Falgoust slipped quietly down the soggy ATV road to his stand, hoping not to alert the intelligent beasts to his presence. A half-hour later, an orange-clad Borges stepped into the thick woods and began to hunt.
He moved slowly, mostly in a half-crouch to better see through the brush.
He jumped drove after drove of hogs, but never got off a shot — a crash, a smash and a glimpse of black were all he got.
Borges was moving animals, but Falgoust hadn’t shot. After 45 minutes of scouring the woods he began to worry.
Falgoust was fretting, too. Millé said the property was loaded with pigs, but he hadn’t seen or even heard anything. Nothing.
Then, all of a sudden, there it was.
Even at 30 yards, Falgoust could make out the hog’s impressive tushes, the animal’s sharp upper and lower tusk-like canine teeth. This wasn’t a giant hog, but it was obviously a fully mature boar — no youngster.
Borges knew Falgoust had his pig. Some shots just have that ring of finality to them; like this one.