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Zest to kill rats creating a new Silent Spring?

The Dig reports on increasingly common and long lasting rat poisons that are beginning to work their way up the food chain - to the raptors that eat the rats that don't die right away.

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That will protect the birds! There are other ways to get rid of mice and rats.

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From the Audubon Society (linked to in the Dig article):

Many of Murray’s patients don’t have enough red-blood cells to deliver oxygen to their tissues, so they are logy. Their heads droop, the linings of their mouths are pale; some bleed from their eyes, nose, lungs, or other organs. In 2011 she found rodenticides in 86 percent of the raptor livers she examined, and all but one contained brodifacoum, especially deadly to birds. She rehabilitates some patients by injecting them with vitamin K, but the birds still retain rodenticides and are likely to accumulate more after they are released.

There’s no safe place or safe delivery system for second-generation rodenticides. After a rodent partakes, it stumbles around for three to four days, displaying itself as an especially tempting meal not just for raptors but for mammalian predators, including red foxes, gray foxes, endangered San Joaquin kit foxes, swift foxes, coyotes, wolves, raccoons, black bears, skunks, badgers, mountain lions, bobcats, fishers, dogs, and house cats—all of which suffer lethal and sublethal secondary poisoning from eating rodents. Deer, nontarget rodents, waterfowl, waterbirds, shorebirds, songbirds, and children suffer lethal and sublethal poisoning from eating bait directly.

This is a stupid thing to be putting into the food chain, especially to prevent a hypothetical problem that hasn't happened.

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IMAGE(https://elmercatdotorg.files.wordpress.com/2018/05/skunks.png)
          ( from another rat-based post today on NextDoor )

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Rodenticide and lead show up in far too many injured wildlife, especially birds of prey. And they both come from human sources, although for lead may have been in the environment from some time ago as it doesn't really good away.

I'm glad to see the rodenticide part of it getting some attention, since we can stop it by using other methods of rodent control. (Sticky traps are bad too, especially outdoors, as they can easily catch and kill unintended animals).

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My part of Somerville used to be raptor central. This year, we've seen / heard hardly any.
There's a big squirrel problem here, and one of the neighbors took matters into their own hands, laying bait out. Word got around, and they had Animal Control called on them. Makes me wonder, though, how many other people are doing this who haven't been caught, and what the impact is going to be?

I love the hawks. In addition to keeping rodent population down, they helped with the other big nuisance wildlife problem - pigeons.

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.

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Put it down rat holes to kill them.

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EPA won't allow it and/or is trying to investigate some limited use.

They need to. It helps

City of Boston is trying to get permission. Once they do, places like Chelsea and other towns will be able to apply for the waiver.

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How can Carbon Dioxide be worse than literal poison working through the food chain. I continue to be dumbfounded by the controversial use of dry ice to kill rodents.

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What are you trying to destroy the earth. Anyway the rats were here first so they get to keep the place.

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They came with humans. Humans cause rats to spread around the globe. They can swim, but not that well.

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They came with Europeans.

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They weren't in Europe until they came to Europe from Asia with the trade routes with Asians.

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They didn't come to America with the original settlers, who came from Asia. Europeans brought them.

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Many industrial processes generate carbon dioxide as a by-product of various chemical reactions. Instead of being released directly into the atmosphere, it can be captured and recovered for other uses. This is how commercial carbon dioxide products are made.

In other words, dry ice is simply re-using otherwise wasted carbon dioxide, allowing it to serve another useful purpose before ultimately releasing it. Note this is quite different than carbon dioxide pollution generated by burning fossil fuels as an energy source.

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She notes a threat to children, but gives nothing to back that up. I mean, my son doesn't go into the poison containers, which are designed to ensure kids don't do that. Nor does he eat dead rats, or wild birds of prey.

I mean, other than that, the article was good, and the threat to the ecosystem should be noted, but she does throw out that "what about the children" line lazily.

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Others haven't been so fortunate:

Kids and rat poisons do not mix. Unfortunately, these chemicals poison over 10,000 children across the U.S every year.

In the linked article, that "10,000 children" is a link to an EPA announcement banning the new rat poisons. In the Dig article, it's pointed out that since the EPA didn't actually recall the poison, there are massive quantities still for sale.

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More kids would be dead from infectious diseases if we didn’t kill the rats. In NYC they have the dogs do it, of course people flip out here if they see a dog off the leash.

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Citations needed.

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That seems like a situation where parents should tell their kids now to get into those.

And again, this is not to say the poison in the bait boxes are alright, since the rest of the article supports the overall claim that they are not, but still, the poison is in a box for a reason.

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Its not about accidental poisoning, its about the fact that the poison is increasing the rat population. These poisons are designed to be as safe as possible, which is why they don't kill instantly. And the rat doesn't die in their burrow, they wander around in delirious pain. This causes natural predators to absorb the poison into their system. As the natural predators die the rat population increases.

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As I have noted in the previous comments.

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The world is full of poisons that endanger children. While it is one of the factors in this problem, it is a generally agreed that rat poison is dangerous to children, and pets that come into direct contact.

The new and important information is that 2nd exposure is killing natural predators and natural competitors. As because of this poison is actually causing the rat population to increase rather that decrease.

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is guaranteed effective, as every parent knows...

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When they are young, they will listen to you. When they get to the stage of doing their own thing, they should know better. Of course, the tide pod trend works against the second part of the theory, but still. And toddlers should be watched, with parents noticing when their kid are near things like rat poison bait stations.

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When they are young, they will listen to you.

Maybe your kid is easily frightened into compliance, but not every kid is your kid.

Also, are you raising an obey me kid or a think for self kid? Consider that the next time you punish your child for being curious rather than put your poison away.

Too funny.

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I guess I messed him up when I told him not to touch the third rail or stopped him from running out into traffic, right?

Telling a kid not to do or use something that might kill him cannot be viewed as a bad thing. but hey, if you want your kid to think for himself and try heroin, so be it. Myself, I'll be telling him that it is poison and to stay away from it. As for actual poison, we don't use it (if you look at my previous comments, I feel that it is a threat to the environment overall) but at the same time, again, I would advise people to keep their kids away from it. To each their own, eh.

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Myself, I'll be telling him that it is poison and to stay away from it.

And Just Say No and DARE work infallibly well in your world, too?

Hmmm ... maybe you should share your drugs.

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I'll give him no guidance about how to handle drugs. That should work out just fine.

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Don't use poison.

Store poison away from where kids and pets can get at it

If you use poison, only use it in places where kids and pets can't get at it. I made boric acid frosting and piped it behind my backsplash using a tube and a disposable pastry bag to kill ants. My toddlers never touched it, The ants were wiped out.

Never rely on "I've trained my kid like a superrobot and he won't touch anything". It doesn't work. It has been shown to not work. Your kid is not a superrobot and child abuse teaches control and obey, not think and learn.

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You created a boric acid bait station.

Have you ever seen what a rat poison bait station looks like?

But sure, report me to the authorities for telling my son not to touch a rat poison bait station. I also told him not to stick metal things into electrical outlets. A monster I am, since I didn't let him learn what electrocution is like.

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I'm a parent, I know better than to try to micromanage how other parents raise their kids. You know your own kid, that's great. But don't try to speak for all the *other* kids out there, and how they behave.

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You make a good point.

That said, it really does look like people don't know how rat poison is dispensed. Much like other hazards out there, it behooves parents, in whatever way they see fit, to instruct their children to avoid the bait boxes, like they would with say nail guns.

And once again, yes, rat poison can do a lot a damage to the ecosystem. I'm only talking about kids being affected. Just want to make that clear as day.

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are actually not super easy to get into, which is good. The kid would have to work at it a bit, which would give the parent time to intervene. Personally, I'm not too worried on that front!

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