Rats have significant agricultural, natural resource, and human health
impacts in the Hawaiian Islands. Where they are used, current control
techniques provide inconsistent levels of protection from rodent damage,
and more effective methods for control are needed. Recognizing this
need, Congress directed the establishment of a research project in cooperation
with the Hawaii Agricultural Research Center.
This project, by investigating a wider variety of methods to resolve
small mammal damage to agriculture, reforestation, structures &
equipment, also fulfills one of the USDA-APHIS-Wildlife Services program
research needs identified in a research needs assessment. Project staff
will collaborate with other state and federal agencies and private organizations
to develop techniques to control rodents and other vertebrate species
in natural areas. Research efforts covered by this project document
will address, when appropriate, the parallel vertebrate pest control
needs of the Hawaiian agriculture industry and the conservation community.
Field studies are conducted on the biology of rats in macadamia orchards
with the ultimate goal of developing an ecologically sound and cost-effective
integrated pest management plan for these pests in this crop. Additionally,
due to rapid diversification in Hawaiian agriculture, there is a need
to assess economic impacts of rat damage to new crops. Similarly, assessment
of recently introduced vertebrate pest populations and their impacts
may also be needed.
Project Leader: Dr.
William C. Pitt,
Hawaii Field Station
P.O. Box 10880
Hilo, HI 96721
Factsheet on Research Project
Goal and Objectives
of the Hilo, HI, Field Station
Hilo, HI, Field Station Information