Invasive species and diseases cause untold harm to Hawaii’s environment and economy (including agriculture). Whether they were introduced intentionally or accidentally to our islands, invasive species are generally hearty and able to spread quickly.
More and more, detection dogs are being used around the world for environmental conservation purposes. Early detection and eradication are key to preventing the spread of invasive species. The powerful olfactory abilities of dogs enable them to detect tiny amounts of target scent in large outdoor areas that may be challenging for humans to survey visually. In cases where invasive species have already spread widely, more traditional eradication methods such as island-wide application of rodenticide on a rat-infested island can be conducted. However with an invasive plant that lives amongst non-invasive plants, application of an herbicide in a wide area could negatively affect the non-target plants.
Conservation Dogs of Hawaii is a division of our non-profit organization which facilitates the research and use of detection dogs for environmental conservation purposes.
To read more about our projects please visit: http://www.conservationdogshawaii.org