Criteria for the Selection and Development of Predacides

    Published: Jan 1983

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    Since 1940, the Denver Wildlife Research Center has been evaluating toxicants for the control of coyotes. These lethal agents for coyotes and other predators are commonly called predacides. This paper describes our current criteria for the selection and development of predacides. Efficacy standards under practical working conditions, human and environmental safety factors, and compliance with registration requirements established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) are important criteria. Most of the criteria were developed for chemicals that would be used in the livestock protection collar (toxic collar), but they also apply to other predacidal techniques such as single lethal dose baits and large baits.

    The first criterion is that the chemical be toxic to coyotes, although tests on coyotes may be precluded for chemicals that are hazardous to humans. Of prime importance is that the chemical not be dermally toxic or carcinogenic. An antidote is highly desirable but not essential. A predacide should be tasteless and odorless so that it is well accepted and should be effective at low oral doses so that the amount used is not excessive and bulky. A predacide should be effective within 24 h so that predation can be stopped as soon as possible. Chemicals that are economical and commercially available are highly desirable. Residue levels in poisoned coyotes should not be toxic to scavengers. For livestock-borne devices such as the toxic collar, the toxicant should not leave harmful residues of chemical in sheep exposed to sublethal doses. The presence of such residues could prevent marketing of sheep that had worn toxic collars. If the sheep dies, residues in or on the sheep should not be toxic to scavengers. Selective toxicity to coyotes is desirable so that nontarget species will not be poisoned if they come in contact with the chemical. Last, the chemical should be registerable and fulfill requirements as set forth by regulatory agencies.


    vertebrate pest control, predacides, standard evaluations, criteria, acute oral toxicity, toxic collar, single lethal dose baits, Compound 1080, methomyl, carbofuran, sodium cyanide, diphacinone

    Author Information:

    Savarie, PJ
    Research pharmacologist and research wildlife biologist, Denver Wildlife Research Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Denver, Colo.

    Connolly, GE
    Research pharmacologist and research wildlife biologist, Denver Wildlife Research Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Denver, Colo.

    Committee/Subcommittee: E35.17

    DOI: 10.1520/STP30189S

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