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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Monday, June 10, 2013

New Mexico newspaper columnist Richard Fagerlund making a case on behalf of Coyote/human coexistance----Hantavirus spread by deer mice and the flea spreading plague vector the rock squirrel are just some of the rodents high on the Coyote menu.....................As Richard saids: "LEAVE THESE BENEFICIAL ANIMALS ALONE"

RICHARD FAGERLUND: Coyotes, bats do more good than harm

Richard Fagerlund;

There is a lot of talk about removing the coyotes from the Corrales area. That would be a major mistake. Coyotes in urban areas such as Corrales feed primarily on rodents and rabbits. If we eliminate coyotes from the area we will develop several other problems. This applies to Rio Rancho and other localities in the area.
Deer mice (Peromyscus spp.) are common in the area and several species are known vectors of Hantavirus. If we deplete the coyote population, the number of deer mice will multiply significantly and could create severe health problems if they become established in sheds or other buildings that are infrequently used.

There is more. Of the 107 species of fleas found in N.M., 33 species are vectors of the plague. The most important plague vector is a rock squirrel flea (Oropsylla montana). This flea also feeds deer mice, pack rats, field mice, squirrels and rabbits. All of these animals are in the coyotes' diet and all are found in Sandoval County.
If we don't maintain a natural control of these animals, they will expand and could very possibly cause major problems with the plague in the areas. If the rodent population increases, cats and dogs will interact with them and can pick up their fleas and bring them in your homes. Cats are very susceptible to the plague and can suffer. Dogs have a resistance, but can still carry the fleas.
Of the 107 species of fleas found in New Mexico, 54 species are found in Sandoval County. We really need to leave the coyotes alone as they are the best natural control for fleas we could have. If we put rodenticides out for rodents, then the fleas will leave their dead bodies and attack our pets or other animals. We won't solve any plague problems with poisons. Coyotes are the best natural method for controlling rodents. If we remove the coyotes, we are asking for cases of Hantavirus and plague.

We are also increasing our chances for getting plague and Hantavirus when we allow some people to go out and shoot coyotes for the fun of it. We have to eliminate these ridiculous coyote-killing contests for several reasons: because it is increasing our chances of getting a serious rodent-borne disease and because it is totally unnecessary for any reason except to inflate the ego of someone who has too much time on his hands.
There is another animal that is very much maligned in the state: the bat. A lot of time when someone sees a bat, they panic and call animal control. The truth is that there are 25 species of bats flying around somewhere in New Mexico every night, trying to make a living. Only 1 percent of the bats are possibly rabid. If you see a bat that appears lethargic or is flying around in the day time, it may be infected and you shouldn't go near it. The vast majority of them do not carry the disease.
Also, a single bat can eat up to 1,000 mosquitoes in one night. That is a lot of disease control as there is a much higher percentage of disease vector mosquitoes than there are rabid bats.
Bats are far more beneficial than they are dangerous. Coyotes are in the same league.
Let's focus on eliminating drunk drivers, sexual predators and child molesters and leave these beneficial animals alone.

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