Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Proposed rat poison limits could help birds

The Environmental Protection Agency published its proposed rat poison mitigation plan, which likely would decrease the number of birds that die after eating poisoned prey. The plan calls for three of nine rodenticides to become restricted-use chemicals, so that only certified individuals can apply those pesticides. The nonrestricted poisons, available over the counter, would need to be in tamper-resistant bait stations.

“This is an important victory for birds like eagles and hawks,” said Dr. Michael Fry, director of American Bird Conservancy’s Pesticides and Birds program. “Over the years, thousands of birds of prey, including Golden and Bald Eagles, have been killed as a result of eating dead or dying rodents that have been carelessly poisoned. The new regulations will limit the indiscriminate use of these highly toxic chemicals, and the tamper-resistant bait stations will also help prevent up to 15,000 poisonings of children each year.”

The EPA link provides details about submitting comments during the 60-day comment period that begins today. If you have questions or concerns about the proposed plan, share them with the EPA!

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