Calif. island's bison benefit from birth control

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Updated: 12/22/2013 7:47 pm

AVALON, Calif. (AP) — Bison birth control has gone from novel concept to success story.

A new study by the Catalina Island Conservancy shows that the contraceptives program launched in 2009 for the island's bison has proven to be a more effective and humane way of controlling their population than relocation.

The Daily Breeze reports Sunday that the program has allowed biologists to maintain population levels that are beneficial both to the herds and to the island off the Los Angeles coast where they roam.

The fourteen bison brought to film a Western in 1924 had multiplied to hundreds, but in 2003 it was found their numbers were bringing poor nutrition and health.

The conservancy says the birth control vaccine known as PZP has proven the best way to do that.


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