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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:43 AM Thread Starter
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The environazi's will never learn...

will they?

Removing cats to protect birds backfires on island

By MICHAEL CASEY, AP Environmental Writer Michael Casey, Ap Environmental Writer – Tue Jan 13, 9:18 am ETBANGKOK, Thailand – It seemed like a good idea at the time: Remove all the feral cats from a famous Australian island to save the native seabirds.

But the decision to eradicate the felines from Macquarie island allowed the rabbit population to explode and, in turn, destroy much of its fragile vegetation that birds depend on for cover, researchers said Tuesday.

Removing the cats from Macquarie "caused environmental devastation" that will cost authorities 24 million Australian dollars ($16.2 million) to remedy, Dana Bergstrom of the Australian Antarctic Division and her colleagues wrote in the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology.

"Our study shows that between 2000 and 2007, there has been widespread ecosystem devastation and decades of conservation effort compromised," Bergstrom said in a statement.

The unintended consequences of the cat-removal project show the dangers of meddling with an ecosystem — even with the best of intentions — without thinking long and hard, the study said.

"The lessons for conservation agencies globally is that interventions should be comprehensive, and include risk assessments to explicitly consider and plan for indirect effects, or face substantial subsequent costs," Bergstrom said.

Located about halfway between Australia and the Antarctic continent, Macquarie was designated a World Heritage site in 1997 as the world's only island composed entirely of oceanic crust. It is known for its wind-swept landscape, and about 3.5 million seabirds and 80,000 elephant seals arrive there each year to breed.

The cats, rabbits, rats and mice are all nonnative species to Macquarie, probably introduced in the past 100 years by passing ships. Authorities have struggled for decades to remove them.

The invader predators menaced the native seabirds, some of them threatened species. So in 1995, the Parks and Wildlife Service of Tasmania that manages Macquarie tried to undo the damage by removing most of the cats.

Several conservation groups including the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Birds Australia said the problem was not the original eradication effort itself — but that it didn't go far enough. They said the project should have taken aim at all the invasive mammals on the island at once.

"What was wrong was that the rabbits were not eradicated at the same time as the cats," University of Auckland Prof. Mick Clout, who also is a member of the Union's invasive species specialist group. "It would have been ideal if the cats and rabbits were eradicated at the same time, or the rabbits first and the cats subsequently."

Liz Wren, a spokeswoman for the Parks and Wildlife Service of Tasmania, said authorities were aware from the beginning that removing the feral cats would increase the rabbit population. But at the time, researchers argued it was worth the risk considering the damage the cats were doing to the seabird populations.

"The alternative was to accept the known and extensive impacts of cats and not do anything for fear of other unknown impacts," Wren said. "Since cats were eradicated, the grey petrel successfully bred on the island for the first time in a century and the recovery of Antarctic prions has continued since the eradication of feral cats."

Now, the parks service has a new plan to finish the job, using technology and poisons that weren't available a decade ago.

Wren said plans to eradicate both rabbits as well as rats and mice from the island will begin in 2010. Helicopters using global positioning systems will drop poisonous bait that targets all three pests. Later, teams will shoot, fumigate and trap the remaining rabbits, she said.

Some of the earlier critics are now behind this latest eradication effort, saying it should help the island's ecosystem fully recover because it would remove the last remaining invasive species.

"Without this action, there will be serious long-term consequences for the majestic seabirds which nest on the island including the four threatened albatross species, and for the health of the island ecosystem as a whole," said Dean Ingwersen, Bird Australia's threatened bird network coordinator.

"We believe that the process they are going to follow uses best practice for this type of work," Ingwersen said. "And that all possible ramifications have now been considered."


I bet the liberal secular progressive environazis will not see this as another example of them not knowing what is best.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:48 AM
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Huh, you mean human intervention of the ecosystem fucks things up?


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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:54 AM
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I would hate for the "majestic seabirds" to be eradicated. I just don't know what I would do if they were gone.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:55 AM
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Fucking hippies.....
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 09:05 AM
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I would hate for the "majestic seabirds" to be eradicated. I just don't know what I would do if they were gone.
Like the Eaglets in Carrollton. That "preserve" they set up for those damn birds is the most shit and dead bird infested "park" I've ever seen.

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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 09:49 AM
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We should ship them a couple hundred 'yotes. That would clean it up, then they're so big it would be easy to knock them out in turn...
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 10:37 AM
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...even with the best of intentions — without thinking long and hard, the study said...
huh-huh, he said "long and hard".

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 10:49 AM
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Guarantee the rats and mice will play more hell on the birds than the cats ever did.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 11:03 AM
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I would hate for the "majestic seabirds" to be eradicated. I just don't know what I would do if they were gone.
They should be. They're eating the "sea kittens".

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 11:16 AM
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You see the same problem in cali with the preservationists wanting to save trees and other natural plant life, and wildfire. Brush builds up for 30-40 years, and then "boom". Whereas the natural cycle is to have a big burnoff every few years.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 01:05 PM
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Food Chain
Humans > everything else.

Dumb bastards that want to change that fall into 'everything else'

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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 03:41 PM
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I love it when those nut bags show the World how hypocritical they are. How they justify poisoning and killing off 4 entire species to save one is down right comical? Last time I checked any Mammal > birds, reptiles, or insects. If they wanted to make the World a better place they would do us all a favor and participate in a mass suicide.

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 04:32 PM
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It's only wrong when we or nature kills off a species, not when the econuts do
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 04:43 PM
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It's only wrong when we or nature kills off a species, not when the econuts do
as far as I'm concerned, since everything that is was created through nature, everything is natural. Irradiated fruit is a goddamn blessing.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 05:41 PM
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as far as I'm concerned, since everything that is was created through nature, everything is natural. Irradiated fruit is a goddamn blessing.
Ha. That point of view really got some laughs when we talked about it in Environmental Philosophy. I love it!
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
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You see the same problem in cali with the preservationists wanting to save trees and other natural plant life, and wildfire. Brush builds up for 30-40 years, and then "boom". Whereas the natural cycle is to have a big burnoff every few years.
Did you hear about the case in Cali where a guy was forced to have his protected Redwoods cut down so a neighbor could get more sunlight for his solar panels? Talk about an environazi quandary! LOL

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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 09:53 PM
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Did you hear about the case in Cali where a guy was forced to have his protected Redwoods cut down so a neighbor could get more sunlight for his solar panels? Talk about an environazi quandary! LOL
Oh yeah LOL..... I remember that. Dumbasses.....
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 10:29 PM
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I had to think on that one. I remember thinking "So...I have to cut down my tree because someone wants solar power? Move the damn cells."
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 11:22 PM
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If you're going to believe in evolution, you shouldn't hold any species sacred. Non-native, invasive species will always find new ways into biomes, and outcompete natives, and forge new interactions with natives. It's how that shit goes.

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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 09:49 PM Thread Starter
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If you're going to believe in evolution, you shouldn't hold any species sacred. Non-native, invasive species will always find new ways into biomes, and outcompete natives, and forge new interactions with natives. It's how that shit goes.
I had never thought of it that way. The liberals (who typically believe in evolution)are being hypocritical again in a way by forcing this issue.

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post #21 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 01:17 AM
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I had never thought of it that way. The liberals (who typically believe in evolution)are being hypocritical again in a way by forcing this issue.
Technically, no new pressure created in competition or predation is unnatural. I'm pretty damn socially and scientifically liberal, FWIW. Hippies make me angry, though.

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post #22 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 01:39 AM
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I had never thought of it that way. The liberals (who typically believe in evolution)are being hypocritical again in a way by forcing this issue.
Whatever side of the fence it may be, it's stupid politicians making decisions without any real scientific study, forethought or guidance.
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post #23 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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Whatever side of the fence it may be, it's stupid politicians making decisions without any real scientific study, forethought or guidance.
Probably so.

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