One of the frequently neglected topics in the area of wildlife control is the topic of animal disposition. Disposition is simply an umbrella term to discuss what one does with an animal that is in one’s control, such as a cage trap. Options for disposition include relocation, translocation, and dispatch. Unfortunately, in most wildlife control publications created by agencies and Extension agents, dispatch is rarely covered and if it is, it is discussed in only vague terms. I am proud to say that publications with my name are exceptions to that informational oversight. But even publications that discuss how to kill an animal, how often do they review wildlife carcass disposal? After all, once the animal is dead what do you do with the carcass? This educational neglect is often a reflection of a failure to recognize that wildlife control involves death, the death of animals as well as a lack of experience in the field.
The neglect of wildlife carcass disposal has taken another step back by the publication of Wildlife Carcass Disposal by the USDA, APHIS, WS National Wildlife Research Center. Mr. King and I had originally wrote this publication for the 5th edition of the Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage. Unfortunately, the fifth edition never took place despite being on the agenda for over a decade. So the USDA-Wildlife Services decided to push ahead and publish chapters on its own. I am grateful because I had three chapters written over three years ago. I wondered if they would ever see the light of day. Now, one has and others will follow, but I digress.
The publication Wildlife Carcass Disposal covers all the main ways to handle carcasses including, single burial, mass burial, repurposing, composting and cremation. Issues concerning disease safety and protection of water sources are also covered. I hope you enjoy the article. It’s available at no additional cost from the following link https://www.aphis.usda.gov/wildlife_damage/reports/Wildlife%20Damage%20Management%20Technical%20Series/Carcass%20Disposal_WDM%20Technical%20Series.pdf
Stephen M. Vantassel, CWCP, ACE, is the owner of Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC. He helps people restore their balance with nature through publishing, training, consulting, and the internet. He has published numerous articles in trade and academic publications along with several books (http://kingsdivinity.academia.edu/StephenMVantassel). He is a sought after speaker and trainer. Copyright All postings are the property of Stephen M. Vantassel and Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC. Text (not images) may be reprinted in non-profit publications provided that the author and website URL is included. If images wish to be used, explicit and written permission must be obtained from Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC.