Coquies have become established in Hawaii.
That was the news that hit the international wire recently from the Associated Press.
Most of us have no idea what coquies are, but in parts of Hawaii they are turning paradise into a noisy mess, and they are an example of how much people can mess up when they aren’t careful with wildlife.
“Coqui population density in Hawaii can reach 20,000 animals per acre and affects 50,000 acres. Eradication campaigns are underway on Hawaii and Maui.”
Coqui are little frogs, so what’s the big deal?
Just this: “The frogs already have a strong foothold on the less-populated Big Island, and people there complain of being kept awake at night with a thunderous roar of chirps as thousands of male coqui simultaneously summon partners, a mating chorus some say can be as loud as a jet airplane.”
Welcome to paradise.
You’ve spent a lifetime savings for your once chance at the tropics and then the frogs start in.
“The frogs have been growing in population in the state in recent years and are now starting to show up in larger numbers on Oahu, home to most of the state’s population.”
While it’s true that we don’t have mouthy frogs here — yet, we do enjoy huge flocks of active starlings.
As one Internet article on the pesky birds notes: “There are 200 million in North America descended from 60 to 100 birds released in Central Park, New York by Eugene Schieffelin. He was president of the infamous American Acclimatization Society which tried to introduce every bird species mentioned in the works of William Shakespeare to North America in 1890, and this turned into a terrible environmental disaster.
“Being an introduced species European starlings are exempt from the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Starlings are among the worst nuisance species in North America.
The birds travel in enormous flocks, pose danger to air travel, disrupt farms, displace native birds, and roost on city blocks. Corrosive droppings on structures cause hundreds of millions of dollars of yearly damage. In 2008 the U.S. government poisoned, shot or trapped 1.7 million, the most of any nuisance species.”
And yet there is no dearth of starlings out there. In fact there are more than ever, it seems like.
Frogs, birds, snakes, rats — this is one area where people cause incredible damage that lasts for years and years.
— Chuck Smith