Monday, December 03, 2012

Rebuilding "Nature," One Mistake At A Time

     Otters have been reintroduced to Indiana waterways, hurray!  Pretty successfully, too; DNR says only 20% of Indian's counties are otterless.  A big win for the environment, right? 

     ...Except ottering is a high-energy activity.  Otters having perfectly good legs, they've discovered that the many, many stocked* fishing ponds in Indiana are a kind of otter buffet; or, as a commenter put it, "They are nothing but fresh water sharks eating everything in their path."


     (This can only end when they introduce tigers to deal with whatever they've introduced to control whatever it was they brought in to keep the otters in check; I heard that tune as a child!)
* All native fish, are they?


Drang said...

Freshwater otters are better than sharks, because otter pelts make nicer hats than shark pelts.

One of the driving goals of the Lewis and Clark expedition was gaining control of otter trapping in the Pacific Northwest, as it was felt to be a major source of income for the China trade.

Rob K said...

What's next, nice, wild elk and bison herds? Won't that be fun!

Anonymous said...

I knew the biologist who ran the otter and fisher program in PA.

He told me otters could break anvils and were pretty nasty. They had a habit of killing dogs that got in the water with them.

Rob K. Reintroduction works well when you have a plan up front to manage the population. When you just want to protect it, it ends up a major problem.