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Re: NFC: ecology 101

Daryl said a real mouthful!

Phylesis at aol_com wrote:
> Moon,
>  The use of exotics by state programs has proven in almost all cases to
> eventually be a disaster. This is most evident here in South Florida with the

This is even more true (if possible) here in the west where desert springs are
so isolated. Introduction of snails, damnbusia, crayfish, frogs, mollies,
tilapia, bait shiners, and bass have devastated many unique ecosystems beyond

One of the serious problems of getting volunteers for desert habitat maintenance
is the huge numbers of exotics we catch and have to kill. "I didn't drive 1500
miles just to kill stuff!" is an all-too-frequent complaint.

You can imagine my dismay, the other day, to discover that Contra Costa and
Alameda Counties are still urging and supporting distribution of gambusia for a
wrong-headed approach to mosquito control! Damnbusia are *proven* to be far less
effective at controlling mosquitoes than the native pupfish, springfish and dace
they replace. They do kill those other fish (and nearly all efficient mosquito
predators) by outcompeting them for other vital foods, outbreeding them, and
eating their babies.

We have a lot of learning to do about "niches" in our ecosystems. Let's not make
things worse by trying to fill them with the wrong thing. It is often impossible
to recover from such disasters.



PS. For a quick view of the fun we have in the desert, check out:

Wright Huntley, Fremont CA, USA, 510 494-8679  huntley1 at home dot com

One big difference between a Libertarian and a Demopublican is the 
Libertarian knows it's not a waste to vote against a Republocrat.