Natural Selection

SayUncle notes that The City (his The City) has been having Coyote problems, and that shooting them should be an acceptable solution. I’ve never understood why this is considered unacceptable by the modern PC establishment, but then again, I’ve never really viewed humans to be apart from nature. We are the apex predator on this planet, and I don’t think that ought to be denied.

In nature, predators don’t usually tolerate the presence of other predators, so they all learn to stay out of each others way. This is a basic survival mechanism, since animals that learn to tolerate the presence of things that would like to eat it, or their young, typically aren’t going to last long. Nature just won’t select for those traits.

It’s not surprising then, that when humans start tolerating the presence of other predators, or even encouraging it, those predators will tend to lose their natural fear over time, and spread those fearless genes onto their offspring. Pretty soon you can’t leave rover out, or leave the kids out to play, without having to worry. When predators who tolerate the presence of humans are shot, they are removed from the gene pool. Nature selects only for predators that fear humans as a fellow predator, and steer clear. When you’re dealing with an animal like a Coyote, which is not endangered and adapts very well to new environments, it’s difficult for me to see why this is an issue for anyone. The Coyote is very fit for survival. Sometimes I wonder whether we are.

5 thoughts on “Natural Selection”

  1. Coyotes are efficient opportunists; there are more now than there were 150 years ago.
    We shot all the slow ones, and poisoned the stupid ones, so what do you have left?

  2. As I mentioned on Uncle’s blog, last year the government got rid of a pack of wolves. There were a lot of people really upset over it, but given that this pack had been consuming dogs for several winters and had advanced to TREEING PEOPLE, and spent a day hanging out less than 50 ft from joggers… yeah. Not good. I don’t have a problem with wolves, moose are more dangerous to people on average. But when they lose their fear of humans, nothing good will come of it.

  3. Ten years ago, it was possible to shoot predators inside my city if you were VERY careful. Not worried about laws, self defense is self defense. But it’s very hard to get a good backstop inside the city now. Too many people, not enough space. Next time you take a walk through the neighborhood, looks around and find a place where you could take a shot on a running animal and not have a backstop problem. Maybe from an elevated position, it would take some serious work. Archery was used a couple years ago in another city close by. They brought in hunters (mostly ones that teach the archery hunter’s safety class). It took weeks to make a dent.

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