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Rabbits and Borers


I knew as soon as I wrote that note that it would result in my entering
a vortex of counter arguments but I stick by my story!!

Rabbits are in the genus Lepus, the European hare is in the genus Lepus,
(or is it Oryctolagus?), and the cotton tails are in the genus
Sylvilagus, as was so well pointed out by Al Limberg.  Rabbits are
Eurasian, I believe, and the cottontails are American.  Hares are found
on both continents, the snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus) and the
European hare (Lepus europaeus).  I would imagine the snowshoe hare
occurs in some part of Eurasia, but this is only a guess as I have
forgotten this part of my biogeography.  

The animal that has been introduced into Australia and has caused so
much damage is the European rabbit.  Although all these animals are in
the same family, their behaviour will differ considerably, note the
great difference between hares and rabbits in Europe.  My comment was
simply a note to warn people not to assume that a successful control
method for "rabbits" discuss in North America will necessarily work on
"rabbits" in Australia.  I gave this warning as I believed that some
people would not know that there was a difference!


In the case of Sandy's comment about trapping moths.  Admittedly, the
traps are used to estimate population density and decide whether to
spray and when to spray.  This does not detract from the idea that they
might also be used to reduce the population by cutting down the number
of males and thereby reducing the fertility rate of the females.  This
would depend on the mating of the females, if they only mate once then
it would work but if they are sex maniacs, it will be less successful.

Ian in Ottawa, where he should have kept quiet.

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