Einstein was quite right. “Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity.” But I’m not quite sure which is expanding exponentially faster. The elimination of the small mammal population due to the import of exotic snakes in Florida might readily point to the latter.
Biologists and researchers in southern Florida are playing Where’s Waldo with the small mammal population. Why? Because pythons and anacondas artificially introduced in the Everglades by dullards have begun to consume entire rabbit, raccoon, opossum, and even bobcat populations in the southern portion of the state park. With only alligators as formidable foes, it’s a becoming Pokemon match between Mewto and Magikarp with the invasive exotic snake population reproducing at a radical rate and no native predator to counter the reptile.
Attempts to ban the import of the invasive python species were thwarted by lobbying from the US Association of Reptile Keepers who declare the research statistics nothing but melted fudge. Meanwhile they shrug off the annual revenue figures of $2 billion made off reptile trade. Go figure big business. Officials remain clueless over how to slow the python migration north, which Reptile Keeper President Andrew Wyatt declares a non-factor, since pythons would perish in the cold.
That’s what they said about the Chinese snakehead in the Chesapeake… and it’s doing quite fine.
The problems associated with invasive species are no joke, here’s why:
The mysterious decline in the honey bee population doesn’t boil down to a single factor, but parasitic flies with origins unknown certainly are a major factor. The fly parasite lays its eggs in the bee’s abdomen, killing the bee in a week before the larvae exit the bee in a scene reminiscent of Aliens. The loss of the honey bee population could mean a devastating plummet in agricultural production worldwide. Joy.
Snakeheads in the Chesapeake area have been devastating native species and the mid-Atlantic ecosystem for over a decade. Likely introduced by pet breeders, the fish has no natural predator and is extremely adaptable to various climates and ecosystems.
English ivy once used to adorn gardens has begun to asphyxiate entire native populations in northwest America. Coupled with invasive diseases such as the Chestnut blight and the American native tree population doesn’t have a sure future. Scientists have attempted to curry resistant native species, but concerns continue to mount over projected success. Critics are worried that artificial strands will lack natural properties of pollination, reproduction, and even adaptable resistant qualities, making native plants once immune to native diseases ironically now vulnerable.