The future biological control of pest populations of European rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus

R.P. Henzell, Brian Cooke, Greg Mutze

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    13 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    European rabbits are exotic pests in Australia, New Zealand, parts of South America and Europe, and on many islands. Their abundance, and the damage they cause, might be reduced by the release of naturally occurring or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that act as biological control agents (BCAs). Some promising pathogens and parasites of European rabbits and other lagomorphs are discussed, with special reference to those absent from Australia as an example of the range of necessary considerations in any given case. The possibility of introducing these already-known BCAs into areas where rabbits are pests warrants further investigation. The most cost-effective method for finding potentially useful but as-yet undiscovered BCAs would be to maintain a global watch on new diseases and pathologies in domestic rabbits. The absence of wild European rabbits from climatically suitable parts of North and South America and southern Africa may indicate the presence there of useful BCAs, although other explanations for their absence are possible. Until the non-target risks of deploying disseminating GMOs to control rabbits have been satisfactorily minimised, efforts to introduce BCAs into exotic rabbit populations should focus on naturally occurring organisms. The development of safe disseminating GMOs remains an important long-term goal, with the possible use of homing endonuclease genes warranting further investigation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)633-650
    Number of pages18
    JournalWildlife Research
    Volume35
    Issue number7
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

    Fingerprint

    Oryctolagus cuniculus
    biological control
    genetically modified organism
    rabbits
    pests
    biological control agents
    genetically modified organisms
    lagomorph
    pathology
    Lagomorpha
    parasite
    pathogen
    pest
    Southern Africa
    damage
    gene
    cost
    parasites
    pathogens
    organisms

    Cite this

    Henzell, R.P. ; Cooke, Brian ; Mutze, Greg. / The future biological control of pest populations of European rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus. In: Wildlife Research. 2008 ; Vol. 35, No. 7. pp. 633-650.
    @article{bf9325e869884f9684c6ae17190b18bd,
    title = "The future biological control of pest populations of European rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus",
    abstract = "European rabbits are exotic pests in Australia, New Zealand, parts of South America and Europe, and on many islands. Their abundance, and the damage they cause, might be reduced by the release of naturally occurring or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that act as biological control agents (BCAs). Some promising pathogens and parasites of European rabbits and other lagomorphs are discussed, with special reference to those absent from Australia as an example of the range of necessary considerations in any given case. The possibility of introducing these already-known BCAs into areas where rabbits are pests warrants further investigation. The most cost-effective method for finding potentially useful but as-yet undiscovered BCAs would be to maintain a global watch on new diseases and pathologies in domestic rabbits. The absence of wild European rabbits from climatically suitable parts of North and South America and southern Africa may indicate the presence there of useful BCAs, although other explanations for their absence are possible. Until the non-target risks of deploying disseminating GMOs to control rabbits have been satisfactorily minimised, efforts to introduce BCAs into exotic rabbit populations should focus on naturally occurring organisms. The development of safe disseminating GMOs remains an important long-term goal, with the possible use of homing endonuclease genes warranting further investigation.",
    author = "R.P. Henzell and Brian Cooke and Greg Mutze",
    year = "2008",
    doi = "10.1071/WR06164",
    language = "English",
    volume = "35",
    pages = "633--650",
    journal = "Australian Wildlife Research",
    issn = "1035-3712",
    publisher = "CSIRO",
    number = "7",

    }

    The future biological control of pest populations of European rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus. / Henzell, R.P.; Cooke, Brian; Mutze, Greg.

    In: Wildlife Research, Vol. 35, No. 7, 2008, p. 633-650.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - The future biological control of pest populations of European rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus

    AU - Henzell, R.P.

    AU - Cooke, Brian

    AU - Mutze, Greg

    PY - 2008

    Y1 - 2008

    N2 - European rabbits are exotic pests in Australia, New Zealand, parts of South America and Europe, and on many islands. Their abundance, and the damage they cause, might be reduced by the release of naturally occurring or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that act as biological control agents (BCAs). Some promising pathogens and parasites of European rabbits and other lagomorphs are discussed, with special reference to those absent from Australia as an example of the range of necessary considerations in any given case. The possibility of introducing these already-known BCAs into areas where rabbits are pests warrants further investigation. The most cost-effective method for finding potentially useful but as-yet undiscovered BCAs would be to maintain a global watch on new diseases and pathologies in domestic rabbits. The absence of wild European rabbits from climatically suitable parts of North and South America and southern Africa may indicate the presence there of useful BCAs, although other explanations for their absence are possible. Until the non-target risks of deploying disseminating GMOs to control rabbits have been satisfactorily minimised, efforts to introduce BCAs into exotic rabbit populations should focus on naturally occurring organisms. The development of safe disseminating GMOs remains an important long-term goal, with the possible use of homing endonuclease genes warranting further investigation.

    AB - European rabbits are exotic pests in Australia, New Zealand, parts of South America and Europe, and on many islands. Their abundance, and the damage they cause, might be reduced by the release of naturally occurring or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that act as biological control agents (BCAs). Some promising pathogens and parasites of European rabbits and other lagomorphs are discussed, with special reference to those absent from Australia as an example of the range of necessary considerations in any given case. The possibility of introducing these already-known BCAs into areas where rabbits are pests warrants further investigation. The most cost-effective method for finding potentially useful but as-yet undiscovered BCAs would be to maintain a global watch on new diseases and pathologies in domestic rabbits. The absence of wild European rabbits from climatically suitable parts of North and South America and southern Africa may indicate the presence there of useful BCAs, although other explanations for their absence are possible. Until the non-target risks of deploying disseminating GMOs to control rabbits have been satisfactorily minimised, efforts to introduce BCAs into exotic rabbit populations should focus on naturally occurring organisms. The development of safe disseminating GMOs remains an important long-term goal, with the possible use of homing endonuclease genes warranting further investigation.

    U2 - 10.1071/WR06164

    DO - 10.1071/WR06164

    M3 - Article

    VL - 35

    SP - 633

    EP - 650

    JO - Australian Wildlife Research

    JF - Australian Wildlife Research

    SN - 1035-3712

    IS - 7

    ER -