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  • asked in Environment 22nd Jul '18:

    Madagascar's wildlife is in danger due to the introduction of invasive Asian toxic toads. The government may import known predators to counter the threat the toads present?. What are the other options?.

    James Reardon replied 5th Aug '18:

    Biocontrol has an extremely chequered history. A lack of ecological understanding together with overly optimistic expectations of biocontrol impacts mean that introduced predators often have unintended consequences. There are many examples including cane toads in Australia, mongoose throughout much of the tropics. That is not to say that biocontrol is always a failure but extremely rigorous ecological research is required to quantify prey specificity and the probability of non-target impacts.

    The most important outcome of this dreadful introduction should be the development of improved biosecurity for Madagascars environment, economy and public health. The lack of biosecurity policy and infrastructure to manage and mitigate the risks of invasive species is a serious concern for Madagascar. The primary challenge is that boarder control and biosecurity management is expensive and requires sound policy and trained staff, all of which are a significant challenge for a financially poor country such as Madagascar.

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