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Vertebrate Pests in Agriculture

Shakunthala Sridhara (Author)

Vertebrate pests cause considerable damage to environment, agriculture and biodiversity apart from transmitting diseases. The problem is more pronounced in tropical Asia and Africa with non-human primates, elephants, several species of ungulates, rodents, frugivorous and grainivorous birds causing agricultural losses. In Europe and America the damage is due to carnivore predation on livestock, bird damage in cereal crops and rodent problem in urban and agricultural situations. Although there are several excellent books on rodent pest management both in India and at global level, there is a conspicuous lacuna of published books on vertebrate pest management. Even the few publications on the subject mostly deal with birds, rodents, bears, rabbits, foxes, etc because they are written by Americans or Britishers. Because their emphasis is on the problem prevalent in their countries and evaluation of management options available to them. In contrast the problem in tropics especially in India is unique. Rodents of course, are the most destructive. But what rodents do over twelve months of year is matched by a few nights of devastating crop raids by elephants or week long foraging by monkeys. Sporadic and localized damage is inflicted by several species of birds, bats, wild boar, blue bull, bears, hares, peacock etc. The damage is sometimes so high, it is impossible for a subsistence farmer to accept stoically the loss of his entire food source over a couple of days and nights. However, his options are limited in view of conservations and protection status enjoyed by some of these animals. The problem is compounded by religious sentiments associated with a few of them. This book is an attempt to find an acceptable solution to the problem of crop losses of these less studied but economically important groups of vertebrate pests. Sincere efforts have gone into formulation of recommendations keeping in mind the biological needs of vertebrate pests, their conservation status and suffering of the poor farmer. Many a time the sympathies deservedly go to the speechless marauders of crops as it is man who has shrunk, degraded and destroyed their habitat, deprived them of their natural source of food. There are no choices for vertebrate pests but raid the crops in their range but we, humans have several to survive. The book is an attempt to understand this dilemma.

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About the author

Shakunthala Sridhara

Dr. Shakunthala Sridhara after obtaining her Ph.D. in Animal Physiology from Banglore University joined a Ford Foundation Project on vertebrate pest management in the University of Agricultural Sciences. Bangalore, India in 1973. Over the past 33 years she has been researching on vertebrate pest management specially the control of rodents in the agricultural context. She has researched extensively on the ecology, population dynamics, food selection and feeding behaviour of rodents, toxicology of rodenticides and adoption of rodent pest management at village level. Her studies on behaviour relevant to management at Village level. Her studies on behaviour relevant to management of avian and mammalian pests are pioneering in the Indian contexts and well acknowledged culminating in adaptable technologies for their management. She has visited and interacted with specialists in the field across America and Europe several times. Keenly interested in animal behaviour studies and its application in pest and wildlife management, biodiversity conservation and ani9mal procedure, she is member of several national and international scientific bodies including the president ship of Ethological Society of (India, Indian representative in the International Council of Ethologists, IUCN species specialist group on rodents etc. At present is Professor and head of vertebrate Biology (Rodent Control) in the University of agricultural Sciences, Bangalore.

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Bibliographic information

Title Vertebrate Pests in Agriculture
Format Hardcover
Date published: 08.07.2016
Edition 1st. ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788172339814
length 513p., Tables; Figures