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CONTROL AND ERADICATION OF
INTRODUCED ANIMALS



  Page updated:29.06.2009


Control and eradication of pigs (Sus scrofa)


For more information contact:
Víctor Carrión, +593 (0)5 252 6189 Ext. 145, vcarrion@spng.org.ec




After 25 years of work, the feral pig was finally eradicated from Santiago Island in late 2001.

The pig is one of the most destructive introduced animals that exists in the Galapagos. They predate on the nests of giant tortoises and sea turtles, feeding on their eggs and thus reducing their populations.




Tracks on the beach reveal the presence of introduced pigs in search of turtle eggs.
 

Like the goat eradication, efforts to control the feral pig population began in the 1970s, but it was not until 1996/97 when a bi-institutional effort between the Directorate of the Galapagos National Park and the Charles Darwin Foundation was coordinated for the eradication of these animals.

In the early 90's, activities were intermittent and depended on the availability of resources.

In Figure 1, the increase in hunting in 1995/96 shows how the population recovered when the hunting pressure was reduced between 1991 and 1994.




Dogs are essential for locating and hunting feral pigs. Upon finding their prey, they corner it until the hunter arrives.
 
However, with the support of the Charles Darwin Foundation and the injection of donor resources it was possible to maintain an intensive campaign that combined several techniques that ranged from systematic hunting supported by dogs trained for pig hunting, to the use of poisons such as Warfarin.

From the 70's, until the end of the campaign, about 18,800 pigs were eliminated from Santiago Island.

After 25 years of work, feral pigs were finally eradicated from Santiago Island in late 2001.



» Introduced pig in Galapagos

In southern Isabela Island, pig control is performed on the nesting grounds of the terrestrial tortoises in "Sierra Negra" and "Cerro Azul", this is especially in order to avoid predation on the turtles´ nests, as is the case on Santa Cruz Island.

 

 


Source: Feral Pig Eradication Campaign on Santiago Island, Galapagos (PDF, 216 KB - in English)
by Marc Patry, Charles Darwin Research Station

After 25 years of work, feral pigs were finally eradicated from Santiago Island in late 2001.


This program has counted on the support of:


The Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos Islands (CDF) is an international nonprofit research organization dedicated to providing scientific research, technical assistance and information in order to ensure the success of conservation in Galapagos.

 




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