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Treves A, Fergus, AR, Hermanstorfer, SJ, Louchouarn, NX, Ohrens, O, Pineda Guerrero, AA.

2024. Gold-standard experiments to deter predators from attacking farm animals. Animal Frontiers in press. Pre-print posted for pre-publication review at

After years of research, our conclusions about non-lethal deterrents and how to design randomized, controlled trials with crossover design.

(1) The long-held belief that randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) are impossible in wild ecosystems with working livestock is laid to rest.

(2) Crossover designs reduce most confounding variables between subjects and strengthen inference beyond the gold-standard of RCTs, yet we describe limitations precisely.

(3) Non-lethal methods can be effective in preventing carnivore approaches and attacks on working livestock in fenced pastures or open rangelands. The relationship between approaches and attacks remains uncertain.

(4) Lethal methods of predator control have been subjected to less robust study designs that suggest mixed results including increases in livestock losses.

(5) Non-lethal methods promise the elusive triple-win for wildlife, domestic animals, and livelihoods.

Expert Scientific Panel webinar recording ( 18 Oct. 2023)


Click for the recording and all the information and Q&A in video and text files.

Treves, A., L. M. Elbroch, J. T. Bruskotter 2024.

Evaluating fact claims accompanying policies to liberalize the killing of wolves, peer-reviewed chapter TBA, In press. Alpha Wildlife Publications, Canada.

Treves, A. 2023.

Replace the ivory tower with the fire towers. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment (guest editorial) p.355, doi:10.1002/fee.2676

Coming soon: Why use pre-prints?

To reach a larger number of peer scientists before an article goes through the publication process, we present our work in pre-print format. This also has the advantage of reaching the public and policy-makers more quickly. The downside is if we get something wrong (demonstrated by peer-reviewed work or a pre-print shared with us) yet it reached the public and went into effect. We accept that risk because of the pressing public need for scientific information for public policy. We will clearly communicate any corrections if we find an error.

Treves A, Khorozyan, I.

in review. Robust inference and errors in studies of wildlife control. Pre-print posted for pre-publication review at

Abi R. Fergus, Samuel J. Hermanstorfer, Adrian Treves in review. Combining two non-lethal methods in crossover design randomized experiments. Pre-print posted for pre-publication review at