Agricultural rodent control using barnowls: Is it profitable

Iddo Kan*, Yoav Motro, Nir Horvitz, Ayal Kimhi, Yossi Leshem, Yoram Yom-Tov, Ran Nathan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

We develop a model to evaluate the profitability of controlling rodent damage by placing barn owl nesting boxes in agricultural areas. The model incorporates the spatial patterns of barn owl predation pressure on rodents, and the impact of this predation pressure on nesting choices and agricultural output. We apply the model to data collected in Israel and find the installation of nesting boxes profitable. While this finding indicates that economic policy instruments to enhance the adoption of this biological control method are redundant, it does support stricter regulations on rodent control using rodenticides.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)733-752
Number of pages20
JournalAmerican Journal of Agricultural Economics
Volume96
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Iddo Kan and Ayal Kimhi are affiliated with the Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel, and with the Center for Agricultural Economic Research, Israel. Kimhi is also the Deputy Director of the Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel. Yoav Motro, Nir Horvitz, and Ran Nathan are affiliated with the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. Yossi Leshem and Yoram Yom-Tov are affiliated with the Department of Zoology, The George S. Wise School of Life Sciences, Tel Aviv University, Israel. We thank Shaul Aviel, Uria Sha-hak, Myriam Freund, Michael Heiman, Shaul Ginzberg, Eyal Lev, Yoav Cohen, Ruth Aviel, Neria Lifshitz, Dan Alon, Yael Chassin, Michal Azaz, Ricky Ketner, Motti Charter, Uriel Safriel, Rivka Rabinowitz, Gila Kahila Bar-Gal, Eitan Tcher-nov, Moshe Coll, the editor, and two anonymous reviewers. This study was partly funded by the USAid MERC, grant TA-MOU-06-M25-078, and by the Center for Agricultural Economic Research, Israel. Correspondence may be sent to: iddo.kan@mail.huji.ac.il.

Keywords

  • Agricultural damage control
  • Barn owl
  • Environmental regulation
  • Rodent

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