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Re: [aroid-l] Woodchuck problem

  • Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Woodchuck problem
  • From: "Peter Boyce" <peterboyce@myjaring.net>
  • Date: Mon, 26 Jul 2004 06:09:36 +0800

Julius' point is a VERY salient one; depending on where you garden in the world someone's treasured pet can be a major pest. 

Here in Sarawak monkeys (especially the cute silver leaf  monkey which in former less-enlightened times was the one sold in pet shops in Europe and the US) are a major pest of orchards; a small group will devastate an orchard of fruit eating what they can and ruining the remainder by biting the fruit to see if it's ripe.

At the ultimate extreme, at least two national parks in Thailand have had to go to the astronomical expense of installing anti-elephant fences to protect their nursery plantations from roaming herbs (elephant populations in Thailand ore increasing at teh same time the forests are shrinking - a bad combination). 

Mercifully elephants aren't known to burrow and haven't yet figured that they could climb over the barrier if they had a step ladder....

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Julius Boos 
  To: aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu 
  Sent: Monday, July 26, 2004 5:08 AM
  Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Woodchuck problem

  >From: "Peter Boyce" <peterboyce@myjaring.net> 
  >Reply-To: aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu 
  >To: <aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu> 
  >Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Woodchuck problem 
  >Date: Sun, 25 Jul 2004 14:02:37 +0800 
  Dear Pete and all,

  You will never know how close I was to writing a letter in the same vien as yours, Pete!   Woodchucks USED to be hunted as 'varmints' (shot and killed as distructive pests, not eaten afterward) years ago, I don`t know if this continues.   I was told not to handle a dead one years ago in New Jersey, I was told that their fleas were possible carries of plague.   For 'humanitarian' reasons folks here in most of the USA just are NOT inclined to take these hard but necessary steps to control any animal population that is out of control (I don`t believe woodchucks fall into this catogory as they are just exploiting a too-readily available food/housing source).    Here in Florida the introduced muscovy ducks are a major pest, as far as I know NOT protected as they are not native and take over native duck habitat, yet if a 'crazy' W. Indian catches one and humanely slaughters and eats it, there is one hell of an outcry in the newspaper! s, and the 'wildlife authorites' make the eaters life miserable (no 'offical' charges can be filed, but it is possible to be charged w/ 'animal curelty') for a few weeks so that he/she is not prone to capture/kill/eat another duck, manure-covered patios/lawns be dammed!    On another 'case' I was approached by someone from a very prominent Botanical Garden a couple yeras ago, she complained that the introduced common green iguanas (escapees or animals released from owners when they become too large or agressive after being bought as a 'pet') had bred to the point that there was a huge population living on the grounds of this garden and damaging/destroying the rare plants and trees, they could be seen 'grazing' in numbers on theplants and lawns during the day!    When I suggested hiring a few gardeners born in the Islands and letting them deal w/ this problem by descretely using nooses to capture these introduced pests, I was ask! ed what the gardeners would do w/ them, when I told her that iguana wa s a delicacy ("green fowl' in Trinidad, rare in other Islands also!!) she was HORRIFIED
stomed to a drastically reduced number of rare plants at the garden and perhaps advertize her tame iguanas as an attraction to visitors, as the iguanas were breeding in droves w/ no predators to control their numbers. 

  Oh well, I guess that is life in the 'big city'.


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