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Topic: Flora & Fauna     Department: Letters

Missing in action: top dogs

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This article, coupled with an article I read not long ago about the inherent danger in eliminating large predators in a region -- the lion in Africa -- and the economic hardship it creates, fit so well together (HCN, 8/22/11). The implications are fascinating and ominous. We eliminate the large predators, such as wolves, and mesopredators -- coyote, fox, skunk, etc. -- take their place. Mother nature hates a void. These animals can potentially cause more economic chaos than the wolf. Enter the feral hog with few natural predators, and we end up paying the bill and suffering the consequences because we've wiped out the most effective biologic and economic control of an invasive species: the top dog.

Martin Hagen
Jackson, Wyoming

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