USDA National Wildlife Research Center Symposia


Date of this Version



Predation management is controversial and much recent debate has focused on the cost of management efforts. This manuscript considers the cost of predators to agriculture, big game or threatened and endangered species management, and human health and safety. Subsequently, the cost of efforts to manage predation in these contexts is discussed, and benefit:cost ratios are calculated. When properly applied, predation management shows benefit:cost ratios of between 3:1 to 27:1 for agriculture and 2:1 to 22:1 for wildlife protection. For human health and safety, benefit:cost ratios are more difficult to calculate, but we argue that benefits outweigh costs in many different areas. We conclude that in terms of benefit:cost returns on investment, predation management is an extremely efficient means of protecting livestock, wildlife species of concern, and human health and safety.