CELS Graduate Student Finds Problems with Nuisance Animal Relocation

Media Contact: Todd McLeish, 401-874-7892

Anne Devan-Song and Vignesh Mohandasan

URI graduate student Anne Devan-Song holds a bamboo pit viper as research assistant Vignesh Mohandasan looks on. (Photo courtesy of Anne Devan-Song)

KINGSTON, R.I. – February 12, 2014 – It’s a common phenomenon around the world: when humans observe wildlife in their neighborhood that they consider a nuisance, they call government wildlife officials to have the animal removed and transported elsewhere, often great distances away. It makes people happy to think they are ridding themselves of a potential problem without killing the animal.

What they don’t know is that they may be killing the animal after all, and it can be a long, slow death.

That is the finding of a study by University of Rhode Island graduate student Anne Devan-Song, who studied the conflicts between people and snakes in Hong Kong, a region of high population density and high snake density and diversity.

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