Invasive species are a serious problem. Once an animal gets into an environment where it has no real predators, there’s no telling what will happen. Florida is overrun with pythons; they’re even fighting off local gators. If a gator can’t stand up to invasive species, what could a flightless bird do against predators? If that bird is the New Zealand kiwi, nothing; the kiwi is an endangered species thanks to predators like rats, possums, and weasels who aren’t native to New Zealand, and they’re done with it. New Zealand is starting a drive to wipe out invasive species by 2050.
“It’s wonderful that they’re going to attempt to do this, it’s certainly on an unprecedented scale,” said the director of the Wohlsen Center for Sustainable Environment, Sarah Dawson of Franklin and Marshall College. “It’s never been attempted for such a large area or for species that are so difficult to control.”
New Zealand has had some success with their drive, wiping out rats on some moderately-sized islands, but New Zealand itself is apparently overrun by critters. You can either stop them from getting onto your territory, wipe them out when they get there, or try to mitigate the damage. No one’s ever tried to wipe invasive species so aggressively, and yet New Zealand is putting their money where their mouth is to the tune of $1 for every $2 local governments and private companies pony up.
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