IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The bioeconomics of controlling an African rodent pest species




The paper treats the economy of controlling an African pest rodent, the multimammate rat, causing major damage in maize production. An ecological population model is presented and used as a basis for the economic analyses carried out at the village level using data from Tanzania. This model incorporates both density-dependent and density-independent (stochastic) factors. Rodents are controlled by applying poison, and the costs are made up of the cost of poison plus the damage to maize production. We analyse how the present-value costs of maize production are affected by various rodent control strategies, by varying the duration and timing of rodenticide application. Our numerical results suggest that it is economically beneficial to control the rodent population. In general, the most cost-effective duration of controlling the rodent population is 3–4 months every year, and especially at the end of the dry season/beginning of rainy season. The paper demonstrates that changing from today's practice of symptomatic treatment when heavy rodent damage is noticed to a practice where the calendar is emphasized, may substantially improve the economic conditions for the maize producing farmers. This main conclusion is highly robust and not much affected by changing prices of maize production.

Suggested Citation

  • Skonhoft, Anders & Leirs, Herwig & Andreassen, Harry P. & Mulungu, Loth S.A. & Stenseth, Nils Chr., 2006. "The bioeconomics of controlling an African rodent pest species," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(4), pages 453-475, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:endeec:v:11:y:2006:i:04:p:453-475_00

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Olson, Lars J., 2006. "The Economics of Terrestrial Invasive Species: A Review of the Literature," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 35(1), pages 178-194, April.
    2. Kan, Iddo & Motro, Yoav & Horvitz, Nir & Kimhi, Ayal & Leshem, Yossi & Yom-Tov, Yoram & Nathan, Ran, 2012. "Economic Efficiency of Agricultural Rodent Control Using," Discussion Papers 164510, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:endeec:v:11:y:2006:i:04:p:453-475_00. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.