Most people know…
that invasive species are bad for the places where they were imported. Plants especially can have a negative economic impact, the damage being done by invasive plants is estimated at $34.7 billion a year in the US. I have no idea how they calculate that high figure, but the main problem is the plants and animals causing the environmental harm are generally ones that were imported by people. And when it is an animal, I am far more sympathetic for that creature.
The mongoose shown in this post is on the island of Maui and was brought in to control rats. You would think that before the animal was imported, someone would have figured out that rats roam around nocturnally and the mongoose is a daytime predator. Sure they eat rats, but not enough of them to control the population. Instead, native bird populations started crashing soon after their arrival.
Mongooses were brought to the islands by the sugar industry to cut down on rats in the cane fields, but the Mongoose had other animals eyed up on its menu.
The mongoose started eating ground nesting birds and eggs almost making the native Newell’s shearwaters and Nene Hawaiian Goose go extinct. I don’t have a photo of the gull or goose, but I also did not see an abundance of Mongoose either. They are a bit shy.
The only way for an invasive species to get to the Hawaiian Islands is either fly or swim across the Pacific, or be brought by people. To me, it really seems a travesty since the Mongoose was unwillingly imported here, yet now they are hunted and killed just for doing what they were designed to do. When will people learn? Who will save us from ourselves?