Poisons are not Discriminate


A Swall Meadow homeowner called us last fall. He had put out rodenticide poison to
get rid of unwanted ground squirrels; he had just seen a Ringtail on his property and
was afraid it might have ingested some of the poison. We recommended he remove all
poisons immediately; he would have to wait to see if the Ringtail was killed. Happily,
the rarely-seen mammal was spotted later, alive. ESWC provided information on nonlethal
methods for discouraging problem wildlife. Poisons are not discriminate; new
generations of rodent poisons may not kill an animal who eats a poisoned rodent but
will stay in their system indefinitely and, over time, build up to lethal levels.


“Second-generation” anti-coagulant poisons are being
found in live wild animals in tests done at rehab centers
and by CA Fish & Wildlife in the wilderness. 100% of
mountain lions and bobcats tested were positive; 80% of
Fishers (only 1000 of these rare mammals in the Sierra)
and raptors also tested positive. These predators eat
poisoned squirrels and other prey; it doesn’t kill them but
stays in their systems, building up over time as they eat
other poisoned animals. Like lead and other heavy metal
poisoning, this long-term poisoning eventually kills
through organ breakdown or injuries due to weakness.