Friday, 25 February 2011

Rats!

There is a report that conservationists will attempt to eradicate the wild Brown rats on the Atlantic island of South Georgia (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7052509.ece ). As in many other cases, the rats arrived on whaling boats and have decimated the island populations of ground nesting birds (they eat the eggs and the chicks). The South Georgia pipit, the most southerly song bird is one threatened species. Getting rid of all the rats in such a large area (80,000 hectares) is frought with problems as the terrain is difficult and the rats burrow effectively. The fact that greeny-blue poison pellets will be used as 'they are least attractive to birds' does not fill me with confidence.

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