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Gorillas for Molokai

A safe haven for the big beauties.
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Eco-types often bemoan the loss of beautiful and popular megafauna - two examples are the gorilla and the panda bear. In Hawaii, the lack of natural predators has produced profligate proliferation for all sorts of accidentally introduced animals - examples are mynah birds and mongooseses.

These accidental animals all seem to be birds, rats or other small ne'er-do-well types. Why not bring in some gorillas and panda bears? Everyone loves them, and they could be an added tourist attraction. Bamboo is a pestiferous weed in Hawaii, as is guava and many other fruits - so there would be plenty of food for both. Plus, although Oahu is densely populated, many of the other islands (eg Molokai) have acres and acres of deserted cane and pinapple plantation that is reverting to weed lands - and the weeds here are bamboo and guava.

The eco-purist here exclaims that gorillas and pandas themselves would become pests. I argue that (1) these animals have such a low reproductive rate that this would take a long time and (2) these animals are so desired by zoos (especially pandas) that the state of Hawaii could turn a profit by periodically collecting individuals and selling them to zoos.

bungston, Dec 06 2002

(?) Killer Bees http://www.si.edu/r...buginfo/killbee.htm
A really good idea for increasing honey production in South America. [DrBob, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

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       Well-meaning introduction of foreign species has gone horribly awry so many times that I think it's generally regarded as a bad idea from the start now. Sure, it seems unthinkable now that this precious, near-extinct animal would ever become a pest, itself threatening the biodiversity of a region... but outcomes can surprise.
egnor, Dec 06 2002
  

       There is always the chance that some strain of leprosy hanging around Molokai has mutated such that it turns them into super intellegent apes and pandas, and then learn to make tools, and build rafts, and jets, and well. . .the rest is self explanitory. At least it would give charlton heston something to do.
notme, Dec 06 2002
  

       And then in the future sombody sent from earth to space will return here to find a race of highly intelligent apes who will enslave him.
Gulherme, Dec 06 2002
  

       up on the fence with forni. I think I might chance this one. croissant for bringing the topic up.   

       Public: Zoo?
po, Dec 07 2002
  

       t'would be nice if we *all* continued to see mountain gorillas in Rwanda...
po, Dec 07 2002
  

       Not a good idea, for the aforementioned reasons regarding introduced species.
Pharaoh Mobius, Dec 09 2002
  

       I believe that both in New Zealand and in the Galapagos, projects following this principle have been carried out - animals such as kiwis and giant tortoises have been "relocated" (not "restored") to small, predator-free offshore islands - islands which never hosted these animals before human intervention.   

       Granted, the Hawaii proposal is a little more extreme. I am not suggesting that the animals be strewn liberally over all the islands.
bungston, Dec 09 2002
  

       Maybe Michael Creighton has been hanging around the HB.
skinflaps, Dec 10 2002
  

       Oh oh UB, you forgot the prickly pear!
madradish, Dec 10 2002
  

       Well aren't we the smartarse ;p   

       Aside: The aardvark can also catch leprosy!
madradish, Dec 15 2002
  

       Grow to 15" overall - they dig 10' deep burrows up to 40' in length.
thumbwax, Dec 15 2002
  

       what are the moths doing to the cactus then?
po, Dec 15 2002
  

       oh the caterpillars - I see, sorry so slow today.
po, Dec 15 2002
  

       what could possibly go wrong
methinksnot, Dec 08 2011
  

       Rise of the Planet of the Leper Apes
simonj, Dec 09 2011
  
      
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