Farallon Island Rodenticide

Topics: Bird, Rat, Seabird Pages: 3 (991 words) Published: December 14, 2013

Diphacinone, and it's Effects on Wildlife and it's Environment
The Farallon Islands aviary wildlife is under attack and something needs to be done about it. The Farallon Islands are a chain of islands about 28 miles west off the coast of San Francisco. They are used by by hundreds of seabirds for feeding, nesting, and breeding. In fact these islands have a greater variety of bird species than almost any other place in the world. The problem is that mice have overrun the island eating the bird eggs and killing the young birds. Some areas are so densely populated with mice that the biologists on the island say that sometimes the ground seems to move (Frimrite, Peter 1). There are three suggested solutions to the problem so far. One solution would be to do nothing. Another would be to use a less potent poison such as Diphacinone but distribute it often and for a long period of time. The final option would be to use an extremely potent poison such as Brodifacoum and distribute it for a shorter period of time and less often. In this paper we will look at the second option of using a less potent poison and try and determine whether this would be the best approach.
First, it is important why the mice are such a problem. One of the many things that the mice have against them is that they are the only nonnative species left on the island. The mice first came when seal hunters first sailed to the islands to hunt the abundance of elephant and harbor seals. The second problem is that the mice are attracted Burrowing Owls to the island. The owls not only eat mice, in the winter when the mouse population drops drastically they turn to their second option, birds. Their favorite bird to snack on the Ashy Storm Petrel which is currently on California's Endangered Birds list. Half of the Ashy Storm Petrel's 8,000 population comes to the Farallons to nest and feed. Another problem the mice are causing is...
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