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Enclosures made of plastic sheeting or tubing and large plastic bags placed in aquatic environments have been used to evaluate the efficacy and safety of aquatic pest control agents under actual field conditions. These methods provide for biological replications of field plots and direct comparison of treatment rates and application methods, formulations, timing, and so on. Both efficacy and safety can also be compared by “before” and “after” measurements with positive controls and the option of using both the natural community of the ecosystem and simulated populations introduced in cages or directly to the enclosures. Although plastic bags or cylinders have size limitations, the plastic sheeting can be used to form enclosures of almost any dimension. Results of two field tests are presented to demonstrate the utility of on-site bioassays for determining the concentrations of rotenone needed to eliminate grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus) in ponds and of an experimental piscicide to achieve selective removal of carp (Cyprinus carpio) from a pond containing populations of game fish.
tests, fish, bioassay, toxicity tests, pesticides, piscicides, herbicides, degradation, vertebrate pest control
Fish and wildlife biologist, U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife ServiceU.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, D.C.,
Fishery biologist, U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Warm Springs, Ga.
Fishery biologist, U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, La Crosse, Wis.