At the very least they would cause the spread of those exotic shrubs they
inhabit by depositing the seeds in ever increasing distances from the parent
plant. There is also issues such as competition for resources with already
stressed natives where they do spill into more natural environments (and
they do, I've seen them in intact wet sclerophyll forests before, and in
box-ironbark too) as well as the potential to carry diseases from urban to
rural and natural environments. I think where an opportunity exists to stop
a human-introduced species from expanding into new ranges without excessive
cruelty or expense in terms of money or manpower it should be at least
investigated. Once things establish they become much harder to get rid of,
or far more expensive to control if the need arises.
On Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 2:07 PM, Ross Macfarlane
> I'm afraid I wouldn't agree with the bounty proposal. Bounties have a long
> track record of failure for e.g. foxes, cats, etc. (the number of ears
> presented for the bounty tends to considerably exceed the actual reduction
> in feral populations.) If there was e.g. a dollar a head offered for
> blackbirds there'd likely be a lively trade emanating from southern states'
> suburban gardens.
> I must say I'd always thought of blackbirds as relatively benign as feral
> bird species go. Compared to, say, mynahs, sparrows and starlings they don't
> interact much with the natives, that I've noticed, and they seem almost
> exclusively associated with habitat close to humans, in suburban backyards
> and country towns. In my backyard they inhabit all the exotic shrubs and
> bushes, but generally won't be seen dead in the natives in the front yard.
> Happy to be corrected though...
> Ross Macfarlane