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New Predation Management Methods Reduce Conflict Between Humans And Carnivores

Date:
March 1, 2006
Source:
American Institute of Biological Sciences
Summary:
Conflicts with human interests threaten populations of wolves, lions, leopards, cheetahs, coyotes, and spotted hyenas, among other predators. New techniques can help manage the conflicts and thus help conserve carnivore populations.

Effective management of predation on livestock is essential to the conservation of large carnivores, because conflicts with human interests can be fatal to individual predators and may lead to the decline of populations of wolves, lions, leopards, cheetahs, coyotes, and spotted hyenas. New tools allow better management of the edges where carnivores, people, and livestock intersect, according to an article in the March 2006 issue of BioScience, the monthly journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences.

The article, by John A. Shivik of the US Department of Agriculture's National Wildlife Research Center, describes a variety of techniques now being used to minimize predation, ranging from ancient (for example, fladry, colored flags that can repel wolves) to modern (for example, electronic warning systems).

Some devices work by simply frightening predators away from livestock. In this category are fladry and a device that flashes lights and sounds a siren when it detects predators. Guard dogs have also made a comeback in recent years in the United States. Other techniques modify behavior through conditioning. In this category are fladry with electrically charged wires ("turbo fladry"), paintball-type weapons that use rounds filled with capsicum powder, and guns that fire rubber bullets. Tagging of predators with radio collars that activate protection devices can improve the effectiveness of some methods.

No one device works well over the long term, however, and Shivik points out that the complex psychological relationship between human populations and predators must be taken into account if conflict is to be minimized.

###

BioScience publishes commentary and peer-reviewed articles covering a wide range of biological fields, with a focus on "Organisms from Molecules to the Environment." The journal has been published since 1964. AIBS is an umbrella organization for professional scientific societies and organizations that are involved with biology. It represents some 200 member societies and organizations with a combined membership of about 250,000.



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The above story is based on materials provided by American Institute of Biological Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Institute of Biological Sciences. "New Predation Management Methods Reduce Conflict Between Humans And Carnivores." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 March 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060301095149.htm>.
American Institute of Biological Sciences. (2006, March 1). New Predation Management Methods Reduce Conflict Between Humans And Carnivores. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060301095149.htm
American Institute of Biological Sciences. "New Predation Management Methods Reduce Conflict Between Humans And Carnivores." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060301095149.htm (accessed April 24, 2014).

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