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The peacock – time to use the bird in the context of species management!

What if we do nothing? The population of peacocks in the Country is rising to proportions, where it is becoming a nuisance, doing more harm than good. We can get the experts to confirm or deny my hypotheses, using tried and tested scientific methods. This may be broken down by District, if we need to know if there is a dearth in some and excess in others if the need arises.
The same scientists and zoologists can give reasons as to, ‘why it has happened’, to explain their natural increase, such as the decimation of the jungle cats who used to kill small pea fowl for their food. This may give credence to the circle of life being put out of equilibrium, as an argument for their culling.
I believe I saw a clip of Professor Kotagama, the expert on birds of Sri Lanka, putting forward an argument for their population control, as they may have a detrimental effect on our Endemic Bird survival or for that matter of other biodiversity. I don’t know if this is an introduced species to the island, as it may arrived in the island a few thousand years ago, with migrants. I wonder if historians have definitive knowledge of this. As this species is very resilient surviving in temperate climates like the UK, this is a possibility.
We then arrive at the topic here of species management. I can now imagine how some conservationists may believe that the subject must not be tolerated, because they will say it is the beginning of the end! That means if we allow culling of peacock, when will the culling of elephants begin? I believe that is not an excuse to begin our debate on this subject, a much less controversial subject, if we are to begin intelligent discussion on long term biodiversity survival.
We will have a whole set of stakeholders who wish to express their views. They include religious beliefs, where the peacock is considered sacred and inviolable.
In today’s world there are so many opinions arguments, now fake news being spread around, to back one’s opinion, which is intended to cloud the original argument. You will even have a set of people saying “with more land cleared for farming, the traditional land of the peacocks have been encroached upon by man and so we cannot allow this.” This is because they don’t know that the likely population of peacocks when the country was covered in forest. It is likely that we have more peacocks in the Country today, than we have ever had in the whole history of Sri Lanka. The circle of life kept this population in check due to other species that was their natural predator having a much bigger presence!
So let’s concentrate on answering if there is a problem. If so what is the solution and what are the consequences arising from implementation?
So now is the time to begin talking, getting a plan of action and state sponsorship, using our State Universities to use their knowledge to begin this discussion without delay. The whole world has begun, we are as usual not on the page yet!

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