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The field test protocol required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for field efficacy determinations of experimental rodenticides subject to EPA product registration consideration was evaluated. The two population monitoring methods used to fulfill the EPA requirement of a dual system of evaluating pretreatment and posttreatment rodent population levels were nontoxic food consumption and nontoxic tracking dusts. In these field experiments, both monitoring methods used were designed to measure test-population activity levels (that is, the population density) rather than test population size (that is, the numbers of animals), as was required by the EPA protocol. The measure of population activity levels appeared to describe adequately the effects of the rodenticide exposure on the test populations. The required dual system of population monitoring and the required duration of the testing period appeared to be unnecessarily costly. A single population activity monitoring method and a shortened test duration would seem to be adequate for evaluation of the field efficacy of experimental acute rodenticide tracking powders.
vetebrate pest control, experimental rodenticides, field efficacy, field, test protocol, population activity monitoring, rodenticide registration
Training and Technical Director, Wil-Kil Pest Control Co./Copesan Services, Inc., Milwaukee, Wis