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A cage test is described for determining the median effective treatment level (ED50) of a house finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) repellent for grapes. The basic design can be adapted for use with other small birds and clustered fruits. Five problems encountered during the study are discussed. They are aviary mortality of house finches, having to induce the finches to eat grapes by withholding other food, damage caused by finches “testing” treated grapes, probable nonidentical responses of all finches in one cage, and treatment or handling problems with grapes used for residue analysis.
vertebrate pest control, cage test, house finch repellent, bird repellents, methiocarb
environmental specialist, Bureau of Reclamation, Billings, Mont.
Wildlife biologist, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Denver Wildlife Research Center Field Station, Davis, Calif.