Muscovy Ducks

A large muscovy duck lakeside

What About The Local Muscovy Duck?

The Muscovy duck (Cairina moschata) occurs naturally only in southern Texas. It has been introduced in other locations, where it is considered an invasive species that sometimes creates problems through competition with native species, damage to property, and transmission of disease.

Federal Regulations Regarding The Muscovy Duck

The Federal Fish and Wildlife Service amends the regulations to prohibit sale, transfer, or propagation of Muscovy ducks for hunting and any other purpose other than food  production, and to allow their removal in locations in which the species does not occur naturally in the contiguous United States, Alaska, and Hawaii, and in U.S. territories and possessions.

This requires revision of regulations governing permit exceptions for captive bred migratory waterfowl other than mallard ducks, and waterfowl sale and disposal permits, and the addition of an order to allow control of Muscovy ducks, their nests, and eggs. This agency has also rewritten the affected regulations to make them easier to understand. DATES: This rule will be effective on March 31, 2010.

Some Migration Facts About The Muscovy Duck

The Muscovy is a large duck native to South America, Central America, and Mexico. Due to a recent northward expansion of the range of the species, there is a small natural  population in three counties in southern Texas in which natural breeding of wild birds has been confirmed. For that reason, this species is included in the final rule published today to revise the list of migratory birds found at 50 CFR 10.13.

The Muscovy duck normally inhabits forested swamps and mangrove ponds, lakes and streams, and freshwater ponds near wooded areas. The species often roosts in trees at night. The hen usually lays her eggs in a tree hole or hollow. However, Muscovy ducks will occasionally nest in abandoned nests of large birds such as ospreys or eagles, between palm tree fronds, and in wooden boxes or other man-made, elevated cavities. The species does not form stable pairs.

Habitats And Flocks

Muscovy ducks can breed near urban and suburban lakes and on farms, nesting in tree cavities or on the ground, under shrubs in yards, on condominium balconies, or under roof overhangs. Feral populations, particularly in Florida, are said to present problems. Feral Muscovy ducks are wary and associate little with other species. Muscovy ducks feed on the roots, stems, leaves, and seeds of aquatic and terrestrial plants, including agricultural crops. They also eat small fishes, reptiles, crustaceans, insects, millipedes, and termites.

Muscovy ducks live alone or in groups of 4 to 12, rarely in large flocks. They are mainly active in the morning and afternoon, feeding on the shores of brackish waters, or in the flood
savannah and underbrush. They often sleep at night in permanent roosts in trees along the river bank. Heavy and low-flying, they are silent and timid. Muscovy ducks swim much less than other ducks, and the males fly poorly. We received comments from States and individuals expressing concern over control of Muscovy ducks in response to the 2006 proposal to add the species to the list of those protected under the MBTA (50 CFR 10.13).

 

In general, States expressed concern over feral and free-ranging populations of Muscovy ducks present as the result of human activity. For example, one State was concerned that protecting the species under the MBTA

‘‘would severely impede our efforts to manage the feral and free-ranging populations of domestic Muscovy ducks.’’

Individuals expressed concern over property damage and aggressiveness demonstrated by the ducks. The Muscovy duck is an introduced species in many locations in the United States. We believe it is prudent to prohibit activities that would allow release of Muscovy ducks in areas in which they are not native and may compete with native species.

How Do We Control The Species?

We expect control of Muscovy ducks to be undertaken primarily through the use of walk-in baited traps and through shooting. The use of baited traps will greatly limit the potential impacts to other species, especially Passerines, which would be unlikely to enter properly placed traps. Shooting undertaken by State agency or U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services personnel would be very unlikely to harm other species.

We propose to revise 50 CFR 21.14 to prohibit sale and, in most cases, possession, of Muscovy ducks; to revise § 21.25 to prohibit sale or transfer of captive-bred Muscovy ducks for
hunting; and to add § 21.54 to allow removal of introduced Muscovy ducks from any location in the contiguous United States outside Hidalgo, Starr, and Zapata Counties in Texas, and in Alaska, Hawaii, and U.S. territories and possessions. This removal is in keeping with the Service’s other actions to reduce the spread of introduced species that compete with native species or harm habitats that they use. It also is in keeping with the intent of the Migratory Bird Treaty Reform Act of 2004 (16 U.S.C. 703 (b)), which excluded nonnative
species from MBTA protection. Muscovy ducks are produced in the millions in the United States generally for meat production * * *. No permits are  needed to possess domesticated barnyard fowl.

A Market For The Muscovy Duck

This species is bought and sold in the millions being the most commonly held species of waterfowl in the United States.

‘‘I believe that problems associated with large feral populations of Muscovy ducks are from domesticated varieties raised in captivity that have wandered, or allowed to free range, and not from ‘wild’ type Muscovite imported from Latin America. ‘‘

The proposed regulation’s goal of preventing additional human introduction of Muscovy ducks has great merit. It is far better to prevent populations from establishing than to subject more ducks to control later.

However, the proposed regulation limits acquisition, possession, and propagation for some owners but not for others. Accidental releases from food production are not addressed and could continue to allow Muscovy populations to become established. No clear reason is evident for targeting only Muscovy’s not in food production to prevent additional introductions. Why are Muscovy in food production excepted when this source of accidental releases may be significant?

‘‘The rule should be focused on controlling populations, both feral and domestic, instead of destroying established populations. By controlling populations, the Fish and
Wildlife Service can largely achieve the same goals without many of the potential harmful side effects.’’

If you find this all too confusing, just call Nuisance Wildlife Removal for your nuisance duck problems, and we’ll know what to do.

 

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)

Florida Bat Season

A bat flying overhead

Bats Will Soon Claim The Night Sky In Florida

That is right, Bat Season in Florida. Runs between April 15th and August 15th and is considered Bat Maternity Season. Bats in Florida are already considered a beneficial and therefore protected species because of the massive amount of flying insects they consume at night. That is why we never harm bats, even when we are called to remove them from a home or business.

We just convince them to find another place to roost. However, during the maternity season, we are forbidden by law (and so are you) from molesting or disturbing bats, regardless of where they are roosting. That is so the next generation of these little flying rodents is assured of consuming their fair share of nuisance insects from the Florida sky.

Will The Bats Claim Your Home This Season?

So if you suspect that a roost of bats has taken up residence in or near your house or out buildings, now is the time to call. We can prevent the problem from becoming worse, and clean up the area as well. One of the services we offer is attic insulation removal, attic decontamination, and insulation replacement.

CALL 1-866-263-WILD (9453)

Nonnative Animals Freeze Out

dead iguanaThe Big Chill Takes The Bite Out Of Nonnative Wildlife

South Florida’s recent unusual cold weather might be helping with the problem of nonnative species.

Pythons and other snakes, reptiles and fish are dying by the thousands as temperatures drop.

Colder Weather Puts Things Into Balance

Vultures circled over the Anhinga Trail inside the Everglades National Park where thousands of dead nonnative fish floated in the marshes.

Among the Burmese pythons found in the park lately about have of them are dead.

Dead iguanas have dropped from trees and into lawns and patios across South Florida.

Southern Tip Of Florida No Exception

In Western Miami-Dade County, three African rock pythons were found dead.

Although South Florida’s warm, moist climate has nurtured a vast range of non-native plants and animals, a January cold snap reminded these intruders that they’re not in Burma or Ecuador anymore.

Temperatures in the 30s have apparently killed Burmese pythons, iguanas and other unwanted species.

“Anecdotally, we might have lost maybe half of the pythons out there to the cold,” said Scott Hardin, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s exotic species coordinator. “Iguanas definitely. From a collection of observations from people, more than 50% fatality on green iguanas. . . . Lots of freshwater fish died; no way to estimate that.”

Nonnative fish that have infested the Everglades are turning up dead in the thousands, including the Mayan Cichlid, walking catfish and Spotfin Spiny Eel, said David Hallac, chief biologist at Everglades National Park.

Experts Agree Cold Weather Stuns Exotic Wildlife Living In Florida

No one knows how many Burmese pythons live in the Everglades, where some were released as unwanted pets and others found refuge after hurricanes destroyed their breeding sites. But there are a lot fewer today than there were a month ago.

Greg Graziani, a police officer who owns a reptile breeding facility, is one of several licensed python hunters who stalk snakes in the Everglades. In four days, he found two dead snakes, two live ones and one on the verge of death.

“Vultures had pecked through 12 inches by 4 inches down the back of this animal’s body,” he said. “I thought it was dead, and we reached down to pick it up, and it was very much alive.”

In cold weather, Graziani said, pythons go into a catatonic state, and if they don’t make it to a safe place to ride out the weather, they freeze to death.

“We’re finding the smaller pythons are handling it better than the large ones,” Graziani said. “The smaller ones can get into different cracks and crevices to maintain the temperatures they need.”

Some information from the LA Times

If you discover any kind of exotic wildlife living in the bushes or canals around your property anywhere in Central Florida. Do not hesitate to give Nuisance Wildlife Trapper a call immediately. The number is:

866-263-WILD (9453)

 

Yellow Jacket Stings Hurt

image of yellow jacket

Yellow Jacket Bees Are Different Than Honey Bees

Yellow Jackets, unlike honey bees, can sting repeatedly without harm to themselves. You’ll usually find them in underground burrows or tree hollows. They build their nests of a paper like substance from chewing wood pulp. And their nests can be huge in size.

Yellow Jackets Are Aggressive

When agitated, they can get very aggressive. We recently had a technician completely covered from head to toe in a beekeeper suit, yet he was stung repeatedly through a tiny opening in his hat that he did not know about.

If you encounter yellow jackets on your property, do not try to handle them yourself. Call an expert. We recommend  checking out this website for more information, and then CALL us.

 

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)

Nuisance Wildlife Removal

Nonnative Wildlife In Florida

Green Iguana

South American Animal Kingdom Has Moved To Florida

The powers that be in Marco Island Florida hired a wildlife trapper six months ago to catch and kill their nuisance Iguanas. There are a list of complaints. They dedicate in pools.  Eat up shrubs and flowers. They are able to undermine foundations and seawalls. The State of Florida requires the trapper to kill them because they are a nonnative species, and as such, cannot be released back into the wild once captured.

 

 

There Is More Than Meets The Eye With Nonnative Species

Iguanas are just one example of non-native species in Florida becoming a nuisance.

Brown Anole
Brown Anole

Some others are:

  • armadillos
  • foxes
  • hogs
  • rats and mice
  • European rabbit

That is just some of the mammals that have made it into the Florida ecosystem.

The reptiles on the list include:

Don’t know what an Anole is? Ever seen those cute little lizards that stand on the side of a tree and make their throat stick out to warn others and attract a mate?

We won’t even get into the debate here about Africanized Honey Bees in Florida.

 What Does Belong In The Florida Wildlife Kingdom?

Here is a good idea of how diverse Florida wildlife really is without all the nonnative species moving in on our territory.

The point is that practically everything in Florida is nonnative, including most of the people.

Our job here at Nuisance Wildlife Removal is to trap and remove the animals and insects that have become nuisances to people. Now you know why we can’t just move some species to another location and let them go.

 

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)

Sarasota County

Serving Sarasota County Florida

Wild Life Trapper provides professional wildlife control for both residential & commercial customers in Sarasota County Florida. We offer custom animal control solutions for almost any type of wildlife problem. Whether it be the noises of squirrels running through the attic, a colony of bats living in a building, or the destructive behavior of a raccoon or other critter, we have the experience and the tools to quickly and professionally solve your problem.

For a consultation, give us a call at 941-729-2103

There are many pest control companies in Sarasota County for wild and nuisance animals. But not all of them are licensed and insured professionals. Make sure that you hire a competent expert for your Sarasota exterminator of wildlife.  At Wildlife Trapper, we will be courteous and friendly and take the time to answer your questions.

Give our Sarasota trappers at Wildlife Trapper a call, and we will listen to your problem, and make an appointment to perform an inspection.

No Job Too Large For A Professional Wildlife Trapper Company

Florida is full of wildlife, including snakes, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, and more. You will need professional Sarasota snake removal or raccoon control if you can’t trap the wild animal on your own and perform full repairs and prevention to keep pests out for good. We perform the repairs and decontamination if necessary. Rats and mice love to live in attics, and can chew wires or leave droppings. In fact Sarasota wildlife frequently enter homes, and it takes a pest management company to remove them.

We are Sarasota wildlife management experts, and are familiar with all the pest animals, including all species of Florida snakes and bats. We at Wild Life Trapper are the best among Sarasota nuisance wildlife companies and can solve all animal damage issues. Our wildlife operators are skilled at bird control and bat removal, and would be happy to serve your Sarasota bat control or pigeon and bird control needs with a professional solution. Opossums, skunks, moles, and other animals that can damage your lawn – we are the exterminators who can capture and remove them. Our professional pest management of wildlife and animals can solve all of your Sarasota animal control and capture needs. Give us a call at 941-729-2103 for a price quote and more information.

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)

Really Large Snake Removal

Delilah is 400 pounds Boa Constrictor snake

More Large Nonnative Snakes Are Showing Up In Private Homes

Florida officials recently removed two unlicensed snakes from a west Florida home. A 17 foot long female, and an 11 foot long male. The female weighed 150 pounds.

Boa Constrictor

Also, an 11 foot long feral Boa Constrictor which has been seen time and time again in the St. Petersburg area over the past few months was finally tracked and caught by a professional trapper .

Burmese Python

The same day, Delilah, an 18 foot, 400 pound Burmese python was removed from a yard in Apopka, Florida. She is 16 years old, and makes a meal of 7 rabbits. Only problem is that she tends to escape her enclosure from time to time, making the neighbors a bit nervous.

Officials determined that the chain link enclosure that contained Delilah was unsuitable, and confiscated her.

Do you have a pet snake that has gotten out of control? Can’t find enough rabbits to feed that monster anymore? Call us at Nuisance Wildlife Removal and we’ll help with the problem.

CALL 866-263-WILD (9453)