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National Wildlife Research Center

The National Wildlife Research Center (NWRC) is the research unit of the USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services program. Scientists and support staff are dedicated to finding solutions to challenging wildlife damage management problems related to agriculture, natural resources, property, and human health and safety.

Human-wildlife conflicts, wildlife damage, nuisance and pest animals, wildlife disease, invasive species, overabundant wildlife, and overall ecosystem health are just some of the topics studied by researchers at the National Wildlife Research Center.

National Wildlife Research Center, 4101 LaPorte Avenue, Fort Collins, Colorado 80521
970-266-6000 | 

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image of a laptop computerWhy Modeling is Useful in Wildlife Damage Management

Modeling can be intimidating with its complex concepts, technical terms, and mathematical methods. It can be difficult to wrap your head around. But modeling is a very useful tool, providing information that is difficult or too expensive to gather by other means. 

A model is anything that represents something. People use models all the time whether they realize it or not. When a trapper determines the best place to set a trap, that is a mental model based on their knowledge and experience. Scientists use mathematical models to help them, and others assimilate information and predict an outcome. Models can be thought of as thinking tools, to help form explanations and anticipate consequences.

At NWRC, researchers use all sorts of models to help understand complex systems. They answer questions like: How does disease spread through a wildlife population? How might wildlife damage to crops affect the regional economy? Which management method is more cost effective? Which data should be collected to best inform management decisions?

Learn more about Why Modeling is Useful in Wildlife Damage Management
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