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Project Work Plan
Department of Interior USGS GE PES
Fiscal Year 2008 Study Work Plan
Study Title: Trap Development for Invasive Burmese Pythons
The Burmese Python (Python molurus) is native to south and southeast Asia, and is very popular in the international live animal trade. A burgeoning invasive population of these snakes, likely originating from released pets, is now present and expanding in the greater Everglades ecosystem. This population is continuing its northward expansion at a rapid pace, and has already moved well beyond the boundaries of NPS lands. The recent discovery of a Burmese Python on Key Largo containing two ESA-listed Key Largo woodrats implies that the python is able to cross saltwater, and may threaten to colonize the rest of the Florida Keys. While the existence of high-density populations of a large-bodied invasive predator is of obvious conservation concern, little progress has been made towards development of appropriate control tools for Burmese Pythons. Multiple state and federal agencies have expressed the urgent need for control tool development, with several requests for assistance from Everglades National Park and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. For over two decades, the USGS Brown Treesnake Project has focused on development and operational assessment of control tools for invasive snakes, and is thus a logical choice for development of control tools for invasive Burmese Pythons. This project will focus on designing and assessing the efficacy of several trap types for capturing Burmese Pythons, with the goal of applying results to control of pythons in Everglades National Park, Big Cypress National Monument, Key Largo, and elsewhere.
Specific Relevance to Major Unanswered Questions and Information Needs Identified:
Status and Recent Products: This project is in its second year of funding.
Planned Products: We plan to prepare manuscripts on trap efficacy and ecological insights gained by trapping efforts, for submission to peer-reviewed journals. We will present results of our python-related research at national and international meetings during FY08 and FY09.
for Invasive Burmese Pythons (only 1 task identified
Task Summary and Objectives: As for Overview and Objectives, above.
Work to be undertaken during the proposal year and a description of the methods and procedures:
During FY08-09, we will concentrate our work on:
Specific Task Product(s): [List and include expected delivery date(s).]
This study will develop and test traps for invasive Burmese Pythons in the greater Everglades ecosystem and elsewhere. The results will be reported in technical reports, fact sheets, scientific and public presentations and/or peer reviewed publications. The data from this study will be used to plan control efforts for Burmese pythons, and will provide baseline information on population size and structure in the areas where traps are tested. Data from this study will also be useful for the development and validation of other detection methods and traps for Burmese Pythons as well as other species of invasive giant constrictors (e.g., Green Anaconda, Yellow Anaconda, Boa Constrictor, etc).
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
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Last updated: 15 January, 2013 @ 12:43 PM(KP)