Prospects for the future: is there a role for virally vectored immunocontraception in vertebrate pest management?

Virally vectored immunocontraception (VVIC) has been studied and promoted as an alternative to lethal methods for vertebrate pest control in Australia and New Zealand. Virally vectored immunocontraception offers a potentially humane and species-specific control method with potential for a good benefit?cost outcome, but its applicability for broad-scale management remains unknown. We present case studies for the house mouse, European rabbit, red fox and common brushtail possum and describe the current status of research into the use of VVIC as a broad-scale pest-management tool. All case studies indicated that there are significant problems with delivery and efficacy. The current state of development suggests that VVIC is not presently a viable alternative for the management of these vertebrate pests, and it is highly unlikely that this will change in the foreseeable future. An absence of benefit?cost data also hinders decision-making, and until benefit?cost data become available it will not be clear if there are short- or long-term benefits resulting from the use of VVIC for broad-scale pest management.

Author S. R. McLeod, G. Saunders, L. E. Twigg, A. D. Arthur, D. Ramsey and L. A. Hinds
Date 13/12/2007
Year 2007
Secondary title Wildlife Research
Volume 34
Number 7
Institution Pest Animal Control CRC
Pages 555-566
Notes Notes
Control method Fertility Control