Vertebrate Pest Conference Proceedings collection


Date of this Version

March 1967


I want to take some liberty with my title as it is rather general. Specifically, I want to discuss some matters of mutual concern, and I will touch lightly upon our Division's activities and the status of our reorganization and redirection. In so doing, I do not propose to rehash the several talks that have been previously given and the papers written on what's new in animal control. Rather, I shall use this opportunity to examine a few problems that confront our Division, and in many cases, that confront everyone concerned with vertebrate pest control. We are now, in a very real sense, hooked on the horns of dilemma. On one hand, there is an ever increasing need for agricultural products, both here and abroad. Also, there is the need to protect human health and safety. These needs will require an increasing amount of animal damage control, now and in the future — regardless of whether the damage results from insects, starlings, or coyotes. On the other hand, there is a very real concern regarding the impact of control on the general environment and on non-target wildlife in particular. As a result, those charged with the responsibility for animal control must be responsive to public concern, and more aware of the ecological implications of their work — al1-the-while maintaining the competency and professional ability to remove depredating animals. Simply, then, we must do a more effective job of controlling animal damage to protect the health and economy of our Nation, but at the same time, use more selective techniques which result in the least amount of harm to our environment. We think, therefore, in terms of improved technology, selective techniques, built-in humaneness, and minimum effects on non-target organisms, and base control upon demonstrated need.