Animal Contraception

Listen up, all you fornicators out there!  You aren’t the only ones concerned about family planning and transmittable diseases.  No siree.

In my never-ending effort to keep you all abreast of the latest developments in animal contraception (a topic I know that has been foremost in your minds), I wish to inform you that the 7th International Conference on Fertility Control in Wildlife was held at the end of August 2012 at Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Among its sponsors was the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and the conference (two conferences actually) had discussions and presentations on the humane management of animal populations, whether it’s wild horses on public lands, elephants in provincial or national parks in South Africa, or deer and coyotes in communities across the United States.

The conference included presentations on the latest scientific and technical developments in contraceptive agents, the successful delivery systems for contraception and the economics of wild horse management among other topics.

I know what you’re thinking: “How do I get a condom on my favorite horse or elephant?”  Answer: very carefully.

In a move that makes most women nod in agreement and say “It’s about time” and “You betcha” and makes most men cringe and snap their knees together, animal castration is the preferred, though not necessarily most cost-effective method.  The wild horse management team gave presentations on horse castration techniques.  No one reported the reaction of any horses roaming on land nearby although attendees did see several horses gingerly prancing away with their hind legs together.

Coyotes were in for an even bigger surprise.  Rather than attempt non cost-effective manual castration, presenters posited an alternative approach of chemical castration using deslorelin, a hormone that renders coyotes sterile.  Once again, the coyotes were not asked for their opinions but I suspect that I know.

Finally, we get to the elephant in the room.  No, no elephant was invited either but a stimulating presentation ensued from the elephant contraception team.  They gave presentations about contraceptive agents, appropriate delivery methods, field testing, population effects, animal welfare implications, social, cultural, and political challenges, and how their work is already saving lives and proving that we can make cruel culling of elephants an obsolete management tool.

These presentations were followed by one from the Trojan© brand condom company on the styles and varieties available in their new pachyderm line of condoms.


Next year’s conference will be expanded to explain techniques for culling other overpopulated species, namely lawyers and telemarketers.