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for people who care about the West

Where have all the (exotic) flowers gone?

  I enjoyed the article "Beetle Warfare" ( HCN, 11/26/07). However, I disagree with Ruth Hufbauer of Colorado State University when she says, "So we have to hope that today, we have a pretty good understanding of what's going on, and that we're not making mistakes that 50 years from now, we'll look back on and regret."

In Houston, we have tropical catfish in most of our bayous. In the Everglades, they are trying to keep pythons from breeding and spreading. And in many places the grass carp, or white amur, has become even more of a problem than the European carp.

We are still making many mistakes. The pet and nursery trade is allowed to bring in many plants and animals that should remain in their natural habitat across the ocean. Many are turned loose on purpose or escape and cause problems.

It makes you wonder, "When will we ever learn?"

Brandt Mannchen
Houston, Texas