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How is the USGS helping prevent the spread of the brown tree snake?

Prevention of spread is paramount. It is much cheaper than intervention once a snake population is established.

Without rigorous prevention, it is extremely difficult to control (let alone remove) an introduced reptile species. In the case of the brown tree snake, prevention efforts include working to detect stowaway snakes before they leave the island, as well as extreme vigilance on islands where the snakes are most likely to invade.

If the brown tree snake gets to any other snake-free islands, it will find a veritable banquet of prey animals — and the same thing could happen there as happened on Guam. It’s essential to get ahead of the curve and implement prevention efforts at the get-go, before an alien species becomes a problem.

Tags: Ecosystems, Biodiversity, Endangered Species, Reptiles, Snakes, Predator, Constrictors