Friday, November 26, 2010

Fertility vaccine pending for wild horses works for cougars and wolves

This story aired on Yellowstone Public Radio the other day that reinforces ip's rant on a non-lethal compromise to manage predators, especially cougars and wolves:

The federal Bureau of Land Management announced Wednesday it will use fertility treatment on some 900 wild horses that it hopes to round up in western states during the current fiscal year. The "catch, treat and release" approach comes amidst ongoing controversy over the roundups, which are designed to control the population of horses on federal rangelands.

The BLM argues that reducing herd sizes are necessary to protect the range and to keep the horse populations healthy into the future. The agency intends to apply a fertility vaccine called PZP to 890 mares, then release the animals back to the areas from which they were captured.

The technology exists to administer this drug to predators without capture even as western states are suing to force the United States Fish & Wildlife Service to remove gray wolves from the endangered species list pressured by livestock producers. The South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks has ordered the extermination of 50 cougars under pressure from hunting industries who rely on tourist dollars.

ip has jammed this concept into numerous western blogs with mixed success. Selling licenses to track and identify females then administer these drugs could capitalize its application. PZP is effective for a year. DepoProvera renders males sterile for three months.

Here is an article on the contraindications associated with the long-term use of PZP, it's environmental effects are noted.

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