Information on working terriers, dogs, natural history, hunting, and the environment, with occasional political commentary as I see fit. This web log is associated with the Terrierman.com web site.
I would like to put forward a proposition. Sorry if it seems long; please bear with me. I suspect you will find the idea intriguing. It is well known that feral hogs profoundly impact eco-systems around the world. They eat all the plants and tear up the ground causing mud-slides and other forms of erosion that not only reduce the carrying capacity of the land, but also affect marine and aquatic environments. This problem is particularly bad on insular habitats such as Hawaii or Cocos Island. It is also common knowledge that the re-introduction of wolves to Yellowstone Park has had a positive effect on the diversity of flora and fauna. The wolves cut down on the population of grazers, thus increasing the diversity of plants. The positive effect travels all the way down the various niches in what is called a "trophic cascade". I propose that one could take a dozen or so dogs that have been bred for hog hunting, then artificially inseminate them with wolf DNA and release them in one of the endangered habitats. Cocos Island would be ideal for this. They would give birth in the habitat and raise the puppies to hunt hogs. Hybridizing with the wolves will give them the instincts to survive and form packs. This will introduce the same sort of trophic cascade that re-invigorated Yellowstone, thus saving the eco-system. Once the system has been proven to work, it can be replicated anywhere that feral hogs are destroying remote but crucial habitats.
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