2012 Highlights: UC IPM Annual Report

Costly wildlife damage due to ground squirrel burrows in a pistachio orchard.Costly wildlife damage due to ground squirrel burrows in a pistachio orchard. Photo by R. Baldwin.

Wildlife damage surveys analyzed

IN BRIEF

  • Wildlife damage costs the state more than $1 billion annually.
  • Survey results will enable researchers to better help growers and pest control advisers manage wildlife pests.

UC IPM Advisor Roger Baldwin recently analyzed complaints about wildlife such as ground squirrels, pocket gophers, and coyotes, as well as opinions about wildlife management from recent surveys. Equipped with this information, researchers will be able to develop more effective and practical management methods and enable growers and pest control advisers to more efficiently manage these pests in their locale.

The most frequently reported wildlife problems were ground squirrels, pocket gophers, birds, coyotes, wild pigs, and voles, in descending order by number of reports. The most appealing management practices were baiting, trapping, and biological control, although this varied by pest species. Results also varied depending upon whether the problem was in a coastal, mountain, Central Valley, or desert region of California.

Agricultural losses from wildlife damage in California are likely in excess of $1 billion annually. Based on the survey results, economic losses were greatest for voles and pocket gophers in alfalfa; wild pigs, birds, and ground squirrels in nut crops; and coyotes in rangelands.

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Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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