Sunday, January 25, 2015

First We Kill All the Rats

The dried out carcass of a poisoned rat.
I have written may times about the role of rats and feral cats, pigs and goats in causing extinctions of endemic birds on  Pacific Islands. See Rat Poison and Wildlife Conservation, Poisoning Lord Howe Island.

If you are intent on restoring a species of birds, bug, tortoises, or lizards on an island, Job One is to eradicate the non-indigenous vermin, and rats and cats top the list.

A good example:  Because of an aggressive rat-eradication program on the Galapagos island of Pinzon, Pinzon tortoises are successfully breeding for the first time in 150 years!  Marvelous!

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