Date of this Version
The record of this meeting will stand as a permanent tribute to Dr. Walter Howard and his associates. It should remind them for years to come of their worthwhile contribution in conceiving, organizing, promoting, and handling the details of this first Vertebrate Pest Control Conference. Those of us privileged to attend will be grateful for the opportunity to enlarge our acquain¬tance with the workers in the vertebrate pest control field, and to share in this exchange of information. The National Pest Control Association, whose members provide among other services, control of many vertebrate pests, draw information and guidance from many of the participants, as well as the organizations they represent. Therefore, NPCA welcomed Dr. Howard's invitation to participate in the meeting and to publish the proceedings. The vertebrate pest problems and control methods of the past, as well as of the present, have been well covered at this meeting. As noted by the keynote speaker, the record will be a guide to the future. Important as we may feel the meeting to be now, it is likely that its benefits will be even greater as new problems arise in the future. As the public or some segments of it are affected by pests, it is essential that full knowledge of the problems be assembled and communicated to the public at large. Without understanding on the part of the general population, there can be neither acceptance of necessary drastic control methods nor support for long range management programs based on sound knowledge of the biology and ecology of the pests. If the past is a guide to the future we can expect to be surprised by outbreaks of new pests or old pests in new environments. The development of conditions suitable for the creation of vertebrate pest problems can be foreseen. Participation in outdoor recreation is expected to triple in the next 40 years. In part, this is due to the turnpike system being constructed under the national highway program. These same parkways, that bring people to the "Wilderness," also are protected avenues into residential areas over which many vertebrates travel and find protection close to man. Finally, some of the problems which now are understood poorly, if at all, will receive proper study and evaluation. For example, we are now learning much from studies of the role of bats and birds as reservoirs for disease or in creating conditions suitable for dissemination of human disease. Among the diseases which are closely associated with pest birds are histoplasmosis and crypto-coccosis.