After the successful culling of the white tail deer population in Duke Forest, Dukeâs Board of Trusteesâ have authorized an expansion of the program to cull the population of the "free range" lemurs that have similarly been destroying the native tree and flora population in the area. Approximately 60% of the wild lemur population is slated to be "removed" through culling by bow-and-arrow and shotgun hunters working in conjunction with both Duke and the Nicholas School.As had been noted earlier, the Nicholas School of the Environment and specifically their Forestry program, which has initiated and monitored the white tail deer and lemur "free range" efforts, have recognized a need to balance the population of the herds with the local fauna.
With the lemursâ native Madagascar homeland being ravaged by wildfires to create more arable land, Duke officials recognized that it was impossible to return them to their native habitat. Accordingly, Duke officials concluded that this was the most humane and organic way to remove them from what is, in many ways, an alien landscape to them.
For the first time, Duke is allowing the use of laser-assisted weaponry in the forest. This is in large part due to the nocturnal nature of the lemurs and their wide-eye sensitivity to powerful lights and lasers, which temporarily blind them and allow for a quick "culling."
The cable channel "Animal Planet" is doing a story on the respectful and humane culling of the lemur population at Duke and plans to air it during their "sweeps week" in June.
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