Les hommes ont oublié cette vérité. Mais tu ne dois pas l'oublier, dit le renard. Tu deviens responsable pour toujours de ce que tu as apprivoisé.
Le Petit Prince, chap. 21

Monday, 3 December 2012

Two reviews on feral cat eradications on islands

Nogales M., Martin A., Tershy B.R., Donlan C.J., Witch D., Puerta N., Wood B. & Alonso J. (2004) A review of feral cat eradication on islands. Conservation Biology, 18, 310-319.

Feral cats are directly responsible for a large percentage of global extinctions, particularly on islands. We reviewed feral cat eradication programs with the intent of providing information for future island conservation actions. Most insular cat introductions date from the nineteentb and twentieh centuries, whereas successful eradication programs bave been carried out in the last 30 years, most in the last decade. Globally, feral cats bave been removed from at least 48 islands: 16 in Baja California (Mexico), 10 in New Zealand, 5 in Australia, 4 in the Pacific Ocean, 4 in Seychelles, 3 in the sub-Antarctic, 3 in Macaronesia (Atlantic Ocean), 2 in Mauritius, and 1 in the Caribbean. The majority of these islands (75%; n = 36) are small (<5 km2).
The largest successful eradication campaign took place on Marion Island (290 km2) cat density been successfully removed from only 10 islands (21%) of >10 km2  On Cousine Island (Seychelles) cat density reached 243 cats/km2, but on most islands densities did not exceed 79.2 cats/km2(n = 22; 81%). The most common methods in successful eradication programs were trapping and bunting (often with dogs; 91% from a total of 43 islands). Frequently, these methods were used togetber. Other methods included poisoning (1080; monofluoracetate in fish baits; n = 13; 31%), secondary poisoning from poisoned rats (n = 4; 10%), and introduction of viral disease (feline panleucopaenia; n = 2; 5%). Impacts from cat predastion and, more recently, the benefits of cat eradications bave been increasingly documented. These impacts and benefits, combined with the continued success of eradication campigns on larger islands, show the value and role of feral cat eradications in biodiversity conservation. However, new and more efficient techniques used in combination with current techniques will likely be needed for success on larger islands.

K. J. Campbell, G. Harper, D. Algar, C. C. Hanson, B. S. Keitt & S. Robinson. 2011. Review of feral cat eradications on islands. Pages 37-46 In: Veitch, C. R.; Clout, M. N. and Towns, D. R. (eds.).  Island invasives: eradication and management. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland

Feral cats are a substantial threat to native and endemic fauna on islands and are being eradicated with increasing frequency.  Worldwide, 87 campaigns have been completed on 83 islands, for a total area of 114,173 ha. Nineteen unsuccessful eradication attempts are known on 15 islands and lessons learnt from those failures are provided. At least five campaigns are currently underway. We review past cat eradication campaigns, and the methods used to eradicate and detect cats in those campaigns.  We also review recent advances in eradication and detection methods.  We outline proposed eradications and document a trend for increasingly larger islands being considered, but note that although post-eradication conservation impacts are generally positive, there have been some negative ecosystem impacts.

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