Presentation on theme: "The Effect of Coyote Removal in Texas Emilie Lothet and Reshma Patel."— Presentation transcript:
The Effect of Coyote Removal in Texas Emilie Lothet and Reshma Patel
Background of Coyotes Coyotes are territorial Live in small groups Consume mammals, fruits, and insects Adapt to human control Acute senses Keystone species Live almost everywhere in North America— predominantly southwest regions Type 1 population Valued for hunting/fur trade
Coyote Adaptation to Human Interaction Able to avoid human control in general Learn to be less active during the day than the night -humans can find coyotes easily during the day Lethal measures must be taken against coyotes because they adapt to the nonlethal measures (frightening devices) Have the tendency to repopulate areas in which coyotes were once removed, so control of areas must be taken quickly Learn to avoid control techniques Maintain numbers by learning to avoid traps and bait
Problem 1: Removal of Coyotes If coyotes are removed, then, being a keystone species, other species in the ecosystem will be affected Coyotes’ prey will overpopulate (ex: sheep/goat, deer) Overpopulation of prey can cause inter-species competition loss of resources (ex: overgrazing, loss of plants) Ecosystem will not be balanced
Solution 1: Introduction of Coyotes/Wolves etc By re-introducing a keystone species such as coyotes or wolves, the ecosystem can be brought back into order The population of prey species will be reduced, as long as there is a proportionate amount of predators in the area Resources can be replenished Species that had similar diets to coyote prey are able to flourish again because their resources are no longer reduced
Problem 2: Introduction of Coyotes In an ecosystem where coyotes are a keystone species, and reproduce at a rate disproportional to their prey, the coyotes can pose a problem If there are too many coyotes, they will consume more prey, lowering the population of their prey. By doing this, coyotes will compete and have the potential to exterminate the species of prey from the area Other predators in Texas, such as cougars, are also affected because they feed on the same prey as coyotes
Solution 2: Removal of Coyotes What seems logical is the introduction of gray wolves, which prey on coyotes; however this is not effective because the grey wolves would simply produce the same problem that the coyotes did (they have the same diet) So, humans use scare techniques to scare the coyotes away; however, eventually they become ineffective as the coyotes adapt to these techniques Lethal control: shooting is popularly used to limit the coyote population, as there is no simple, natural way in doing so
Coyote Issue Opinion Poll What do YOU think?
Things to Consider: Is it morally wrong to shoot coyotes when removing them? Is there a better way to remove coyotes from an ecosystem? Should ranchers have a say in the debate over the reintroduction of coyotes in certain areas? The removal? (they are biased) Because coyotes pose such a threat to the balance of ecosystems when they are overpopulated, would killing coyotes for fur/meat be an appropriate solution?