The team of researchers led by the world of their British colleagues will go next year to the island of South Georgia in the South Atlantic Ocean to participate in a unique-scale operation to exterminate the rats, the organizers of the project.
To implement it at the request of the fund preservation of the natural heritage of South Georgia was assembled a team of 25 experts from the UK and other countries. In February 2013 they will travel to South George, which is 1.5 thousand miles east of the Falklands archipelago, for the destruction of flooded island and threaten its natural balance in rats.
South Georgia Island and the surrounding South Sandwich Islands were first surveyed in 1775 by the British explorer George Cook, and in 1982 Argentina seized it along with the Falklands. Subsequently, the British recaptured the island from the Argentines, and now he is one of the overseas territories of the United Kingdom, a popular tourist attraction and a base for the British Antarctic explorers.
Caught on South George visited with its ships and widely proliferated in the absence of natural enemies of rats, especially, threaten the unique bird population of the island, including penguins. Rodents eat the eggs and chicks attack.
The operation is going to be the biggest rat baiting in world history. Scientists plan to scatter from the air around the island area of over three million square kilometers of 270 tons of poisoned bait, using three former rescue helicopter.
The project cost is estimated at 7.5 million pounds, it is funded by the UK government. It decided to carry out after the success of last year's pilot project to exterminate rats on one-tenth of the island.
"The only effective way to get rid of rodents on the island of South Georgia is the size of the spread of baits from the air with helicopters. If at least one of a female survives, the project will fail. Therefore, we must be sure that all the rats can get to the poison. When we finish project, about 100 million pairs of seabirds on the island will be able to once again feel safe, "- said the director of the project, Tony Martin.