Just ban it all: California’s latest “fix” for invasive nutria

Local media has reported that California officials are in discussion about adding nutria to a list of state-prohibited pets.

Hundreds of the semi-aquatic rodents, native to South America, have been trapped as part of a $2 million dollar plan to eradicate the animal from the state.

The news comes mere months after California law-makers announced legislation to ban trapping in the state, as well as the cities of San Francisco and Los Angeles recently joining West Hollywood and Berkeley in banning the usage of wild fur. Talk of a state-wide fur ban is also imminent.

Read our full report on California’s nutria wars.

In other words, the state is already seeking to ban the primary mode of “dealing” with the nutria issue (trapping), and is now on a warp-speed course to remove all incentive for anyone to trap the animals in the future (via a fur usage ban).

Since the state has done such a “bang-up job” of banning two primary modes of helping to control the persistent fur-bearing rodent, the only thing left to do is ban the craftily little unwanted guests themselves.

I guess bans do fix everything, don’t they?

Nutria can give birth to litters of up to 12 young. Their extensive burrowing is damaging to waterways, marshland and flood protection infrastructure across areas of the United States where they have managed to reside.

Nutria were originally imported in the early 1900s and brought to penned farms for their fur. When the fur farm market collapsed, surplus animals either escaped or were intentionally released.

Pockets of nutria were eradicated in California throughout the 1970s, but were again discovered in the state by 2017. Since then, an expansive effort has been taken on by officials to again remove the rodents from the state’s waterways.

Clearly, with all this investment in money and resources to eradicate the damaging critters, nobody thought to simply put the rodents on notice with a good ol’ ban like only California can execute.

Perhaps other states will follow Cali’s lead and tell their local nutria populations they’ve been banned as well.

All this talk of bans got me thinking; I wonder what the state of California would do if it imposed a ban on bans…


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