Friday, February 16, 2007

My Response to Owlboy

Owlboy's assertion: “Store bought mice are lab raised and are disease free."

It is owlboy who is misinformed. Had he done his homework and conducted just a simple internet search on pet store rodents and diseases, he would have found a myriad of information and articles on the subject, including ones from the scientifically peer-reviewed Journal of of the American Medical Association and also the CDC:

Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Salmonella Typhimurium Associated With Rodents Purchased at Retail Pet Stores—United States, December 2003–October 2004

His premise is wrong, therefore his conclusion that pet store rodents are a safer bait for owls is advanced to a category of strong doubt. Obviously, rodents in the wild carry diseases. However, releasing a diseased pet store rodent increases a probability of introducing a bacterial or viral variant. Wild owls may have a hard time dealing with it due to a lack of natural resistance to a bug that is not typically found in its natural ecological foraging niche.

The needs of the bird outweigh my need for a photograph. Again, in my opinion, erring on the side of caution is the most ethical position to take regarding the baiting of owls. I have never lured an owl and I will not bait them. I believe my rationale is sound and based on reasonable evidence.

Link: CDC: Pet Rodents Can Carry Salmonella

Link: Ectoparasites of House Mice from Pet Stores in South Carolina

Link: The Case of the Suspicious Hamsters

Great Gray Owl © 2007 Mike McDowell

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