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In this chapter, our aim is to draw attention to common themes, look historically at the subject, and to consider the use of words, particularly “pest”, “abundant” and “overabundant”. One of the important points is to note that the word “pest” is a label that can categorise an animal in a way that may preclude it from receiving humane treatment and/or being seen as a resource. Word use, values and wildlife management conflicts project us into the cultural domain of examining the zoology of overabundance. We present a chronology of the convolutions in thinking, decision-making and actions to manage the burgeoning koala population on Kangaroo Island in South Australia. While these dilemmas are often played out publicly for terrestrial vertebrates, we also draw attention to the importance of invertebrate pests, such as invading ants, and marine organisms in ships' ballast, and then discuss the ultimate pest species - humans. We regard the issue of overabundance as a challenge to the discipline of ecology. The burgeoning world population of people and the koalas on Kangaroo Island both reflect the same process, throwing up similar biological and ethical dilemmas.

Andewartha, H.G. 1961 Introduction to the Study of Animal Populations. Chicago University Press, Chicago, USA.
Andewartha, H.G. and Birch, L.C. 1954 The Distribution and Abundance of Animals. Chicago University Press, Chicago, USA.
Archer, M. 2002. Confronting crises in conservation: a talk on the wild side. Pp.12-52 in A Zoological Revolution. Using native fauna to assist in its own survival, edited by D. Lunney and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, and Australian Museum, Sydney.
Archer, M. and Beale, B. 2004 Going Native. Living in the Australian environment. Hodder Headline, Sydney, Australia.
ANZECC 1998 National Koala Conservation Strategy. Environment Australia, Canberra.
Austin, A. D. 1999. The importance of “species” in biodiversity studies: lessons from a mega-diverse group - the parasitic hymenoptera. Pp 159-65 in The Other 99%. The conservation and biodiversity of invertebrates, edited by W. Ponder and D. Lunney. Transactions of the Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Bamber, A. and Ampt, P. 2006 Book review of Kangaroos: Myths and Realities 2005, 3rded by M. Wilson and D.B. Croft. Australian Zoologist 33: 315-21.
Banks, P. B. and Dickman, C. R. 2007. Alien predation and the effects of multiple levels of prey naivete′. Trends in Ecology and Evolution in press
Berryman, J.H. 1987. Socioeconomic values of the wildlife resource: are we really serious? Pp. 5-11 in Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives, edited by D. J. Decker and G.R. Goff. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Brown, P.J. and Manfredo, M.J. 1987. Social values defined. Pp. 12-23 in Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives, edited by D. J. Decker and G.R. Goff. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Decker, D.J. and Goff, G.R. (eds). 1987 Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Dickman, D, Lunney, D. and Burgin, S. (eds). 2007 Animals of arid Australia: out on their own? Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW.
Duka, T. and Masters, P. 2005. Confronting a tough issue: Fertility control and translocation for over-abundant Koalas on Kangaroo Island, South Australia. Ecological Restoration and Management 6: 172-81.
Ehrlich, P.R. 1969. Paying the piper. Pp. 127-30 in Population, Evolution and Birth Control. A collage of controversial ideas, edited by G. Hardin. Freeman and Co, San Francisco, USA.
Gunasekera, R.M., Patil, J.G., McEnnulty, F.R. and Bax, N.J. 2005. Specific amplification of mt-CO1 gene of the invasive gastropod Maoricolpus roseus in planktonic samples reveals a free-living larval life-history stage. Marine and Freshwater 56: 901-912.
Hardin, G. 1969. Introduction. P vii-viii in Population, Evolution and Birth Control. A collage of controversial ideas, edited by G. Hardin. Freeman and Co, San Francisco, USA.
Hallegraeff, G.M. and Gollasch, S. in press. Potential Introductions of microalgae. In Ecology of Harmful Algae, edited by E. Granéli and J.T. Turner. Ecological Studies 189.
Hayes, K., Sliwa, C., Migus, S. and McEnnulty, F. 2004. National Priority Pests - Part II: Ranking of Australian Marine Pests. Final Report (Draft) for the Department of Environment and Heritage. CSIRO Marine Research, Hobart, Tasmania.
Hewitt, C.L. and Martin, R.B. 2001. Revised protocols for baseline port surveys for introduced marine species - survey design, sampling protocols and specimen handling. Hobart, CRIMP Technical Report, 22.
Huxley, J. 1960. Originally published in 1956 under the title World Population, it is reproduced in On Population: Three Essays, edited by F.W. Notestein. Mentor Books, Madison Ave, NY, USA.
Hutton, D. 1987. What is green politics. Pp. 1-33 in Green politics in Australia, edited by D. Hutton. Angus and Robertson, North Ryde, Australia.
Krebs, C.J. 1994 The Experimental Analysis of Distribution and Abundance (4th edition). Harper Collins College Publishers, New York, USA.
Long, J. L. 2003 Introduced Mammals of the World. Their history, distribution and influence. CSIRO publishing, Collingwood, Victoria, Australia.
Lunney, D. 2003. Editorial. Thoughts on good writing and the recent CSIRO Report Future Dilemmas. Australian Zoologist 32: 203-6.
Lunney, D. and Grigg, G. 1988. (eds) Kangaroo harvesting and the conservation of arid and semi-arid lands. Special Edition of Australian Zoologist 24: 121-93.
Lunney, D. and Leary, T. 1988. The impact on native mammals of land-use changes and exotic species in the Bega District (New South Wales) since settlement. Australian Journal of Ecology 13: 67-92.
Lunney, D. and Dickman, C. (eds). 2002 A Zoological Revolution. Using native fauna to assist in its own survival. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, and Australian Museum, Sydney, Australia.
Lunney, D. and Matthews, A. 2002. Community-based research: where are the rewards? Pp. 160-175 in A clash of paradigms: community and research-based conservation, edited by D. Lunney, C. Dickman and S. Burgin. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW.
Lunney, D., O'Neill, L., Matthews, A. and Sherwin, W.B. 2002. Modelling mammalian extinction and forecasting recovery: koalas at Iluka (NSW, Australia). Biological Conservation 106: 101-13.
Lunney, D., Gresser, S., O'Neill, L. E., Matthews, A. and Rhodes, J. 2007. The impact of fire and dogs on Koalas at Port Stephens, New South Wales, using population viability analysis. In press in Pacific Conservation Biology
Masters, P., Duka, T., Berris, S. and Moss, G. 2004. Koalas on Kangaroo Island: from introduction to pest status in less than a century. Wildlife Research 31: 267-72.
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. 2005 Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Biodiversity Synthesis. World Resources Institute, Washington, DC.
Mooney, H.A., Mack, R N., McNeely, J.A., Neville, L.E., Schei, P.J. and Waage, J.K. (eds). 2005 Invasive Alien Species: a new synthesis. Island Press, Washington DC, USA.
Neil, K.M., Hutchings, P.A and Stafford, H. 2004. Port surveys for non-indigenous species - the benefits of taxonomic networks. Journal of Marine Science and Environment 1: 11-17.
New, T. R. 1999. Descriptive taxonomy as a facilitating discipline in invertebrate conservation. Pp 154-58 in The Other 99%. The conservation and biodiversity of invertebrates, edited by W. Ponder and D. Lunney. Transactions of the Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Reese, A.M. 1919 Outlines of Economic Zoology. P. Blakison's Son and Co., Walnut Street Philadelphia, (The Maple Press York PA), USA.
Rogers, A. 1993 The Earth Summit: A Planetary Reckoning. Global View Press, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Salo, P., Korpima, E.,Banks. P.B., Nordstro, M.and Dickman, C. R. 2007. Alien predators are more dangerous than native predators to prey populations. Proceedings of the Royal Society series B. in press.
Simberloff, D. 2006. Invasional meltdown 6 years later: important phenomenon, unfortunate metaphor, or both? Ecology Letters 9: 912-919.
Williams, J., Read, C., Norton, A., Dovers, S., Burgman, M, Proctor, W. and Anderson, H. 2001 Biodiversity, Australia State of the Environment Report 2001 (Theme Report). CSIRO publishing on behalf of the Department of Environment and Heritage, Canberra.
Williamson, M. and Fitter, A. 1996. The varying success of invaders. Ecology 77: 1661-6.
Wilson, M. and Croft, D. (eds). 2005 Kangaroos: Myths and Realities. Australian Wildlife Protection Council, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
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References

Andewartha, H.G. 1961 Introduction to the Study of Animal Populations. Chicago University Press, Chicago, USA.
Andewartha, H.G. and Birch, L.C. 1954 The Distribution and Abundance of Animals. Chicago University Press, Chicago, USA.
Archer, M. 2002. Confronting crises in conservation: a talk on the wild side. Pp.12-52 in A Zoological Revolution. Using native fauna to assist in its own survival, edited by D. Lunney and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, and Australian Museum, Sydney.
Archer, M. and Beale, B. 2004 Going Native. Living in the Australian environment. Hodder Headline, Sydney, Australia.
ANZECC 1998 National Koala Conservation Strategy. Environment Australia, Canberra.
Austin, A. D. 1999. The importance of “species” in biodiversity studies: lessons from a mega-diverse group - the parasitic hymenoptera. Pp 159-65 in The Other 99%. The conservation and biodiversity of invertebrates, edited by W. Ponder and D. Lunney. Transactions of the Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Bamber, A. and Ampt, P. 2006 Book review of Kangaroos: Myths and Realities 2005, 3rded by M. Wilson and D.B. Croft. Australian Zoologist 33: 315-21.
Banks, P. B. and Dickman, C. R. 2007. Alien predation and the effects of multiple levels of prey naivete′. Trends in Ecology and Evolution in press
Berryman, J.H. 1987. Socioeconomic values of the wildlife resource: are we really serious? Pp. 5-11 in Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives, edited by D. J. Decker and G.R. Goff. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Brown, P.J. and Manfredo, M.J. 1987. Social values defined. Pp. 12-23 in Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives, edited by D. J. Decker and G.R. Goff. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Decker, D.J. and Goff, G.R. (eds). 1987 Valuing wildlife. Economic and social perspectives. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, USA.
Dickman, D, Lunney, D. and Burgin, S. (eds). 2007 Animals of arid Australia: out on their own? Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW.
Duka, T. and Masters, P. 2005. Confronting a tough issue: Fertility control and translocation for over-abundant Koalas on Kangaroo Island, South Australia. Ecological Restoration and Management 6: 172-81.
Ehrlich, P.R. 1969. Paying the piper. Pp. 127-30 in Population, Evolution and Birth Control. A collage of controversial ideas, edited by G. Hardin. Freeman and Co, San Francisco, USA.
Gunasekera, R.M., Patil, J.G., McEnnulty, F.R. and Bax, N.J. 2005. Specific amplification of mt-CO1 gene of the invasive gastropod Maoricolpus roseus in planktonic samples reveals a free-living larval life-history stage. Marine and Freshwater 56: 901-912.
Hardin, G. 1969. Introduction. P vii-viii in Population, Evolution and Birth Control. A collage of controversial ideas, edited by G. Hardin. Freeman and Co, San Francisco, USA.
Hallegraeff, G.M. and Gollasch, S. in press. Potential Introductions of microalgae. In Ecology of Harmful Algae, edited by E. Granéli and J.T. Turner. Ecological Studies 189.
Hayes, K., Sliwa, C., Migus, S. and McEnnulty, F. 2004. National Priority Pests - Part II: Ranking of Australian Marine Pests. Final Report (Draft) for the Department of Environment and Heritage. CSIRO Marine Research, Hobart, Tasmania.
Hewitt, C.L. and Martin, R.B. 2001. Revised protocols for baseline port surveys for introduced marine species - survey design, sampling protocols and specimen handling. Hobart, CRIMP Technical Report, 22.
Huxley, J. 1960. Originally published in 1956 under the title World Population, it is reproduced in On Population: Three Essays, edited by F.W. Notestein. Mentor Books, Madison Ave, NY, USA.
Hutton, D. 1987. What is green politics. Pp. 1-33 in Green politics in Australia, edited by D. Hutton. Angus and Robertson, North Ryde, Australia.
Krebs, C.J. 1994 The Experimental Analysis of Distribution and Abundance (4th edition). Harper Collins College Publishers, New York, USA.
Long, J. L. 2003 Introduced Mammals of the World. Their history, distribution and influence. CSIRO publishing, Collingwood, Victoria, Australia.
Lunney, D. 2003. Editorial. Thoughts on good writing and the recent CSIRO Report Future Dilemmas. Australian Zoologist 32: 203-6.
Lunney, D. and Grigg, G. 1988. (eds) Kangaroo harvesting and the conservation of arid and semi-arid lands. Special Edition of Australian Zoologist 24: 121-93.
Lunney, D. and Leary, T. 1988. The impact on native mammals of land-use changes and exotic species in the Bega District (New South Wales) since settlement. Australian Journal of Ecology 13: 67-92.
Lunney, D. and Dickman, C. (eds). 2002 A Zoological Revolution. Using native fauna to assist in its own survival. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, and Australian Museum, Sydney, Australia.
Lunney, D. and Matthews, A. 2002. Community-based research: where are the rewards? Pp. 160-175 in A clash of paradigms: community and research-based conservation, edited by D. Lunney, C. Dickman and S. Burgin. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW.
Lunney, D., O'Neill, L., Matthews, A. and Sherwin, W.B. 2002. Modelling mammalian extinction and forecasting recovery: koalas at Iluka (NSW, Australia). Biological Conservation 106: 101-13.
Lunney, D., Gresser, S., O'Neill, L. E., Matthews, A. and Rhodes, J. 2007. The impact of fire and dogs on Koalas at Port Stephens, New South Wales, using population viability analysis. In press in Pacific Conservation Biology
Masters, P., Duka, T., Berris, S. and Moss, G. 2004. Koalas on Kangaroo Island: from introduction to pest status in less than a century. Wildlife Research 31: 267-72.
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. 2005 Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Biodiversity Synthesis. World Resources Institute, Washington, DC.
Mooney, H.A., Mack, R N., McNeely, J.A., Neville, L.E., Schei, P.J. and Waage, J.K. (eds). 2005 Invasive Alien Species: a new synthesis. Island Press, Washington DC, USA.
Neil, K.M., Hutchings, P.A and Stafford, H. 2004. Port surveys for non-indigenous species - the benefits of taxonomic networks. Journal of Marine Science and Environment 1: 11-17.
New, T. R. 1999. Descriptive taxonomy as a facilitating discipline in invertebrate conservation. Pp 154-58 in The Other 99%. The conservation and biodiversity of invertebrates, edited by W. Ponder and D. Lunney. Transactions of the Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Reese, A.M. 1919 Outlines of Economic Zoology. P. Blakison's Son and Co., Walnut Street Philadelphia, (The Maple Press York PA), USA.
Rogers, A. 1993 The Earth Summit: A Planetary Reckoning. Global View Press, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Salo, P., Korpima, E.,Banks. P.B., Nordstro, M.and Dickman, C. R. 2007. Alien predators are more dangerous than native predators to prey populations. Proceedings of the Royal Society series B. in press.
Simberloff, D. 2006. Invasional meltdown 6 years later: important phenomenon, unfortunate metaphor, or both? Ecology Letters 9: 912-919.
Williams, J., Read, C., Norton, A., Dovers, S., Burgman, M, Proctor, W. and Anderson, H. 2001 Biodiversity, Australia State of the Environment Report 2001 (Theme Report). CSIRO publishing on behalf of the Department of Environment and Heritage, Canberra.
Williamson, M. and Fitter, A. 1996. The varying success of invaders. Ecology 77: 1661-6.
Wilson, M. and Croft, D. (eds). 2005 Kangaroos: Myths and Realities. Australian Wildlife Protection Council, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
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