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Stepping Up Pressure for Practice in Rural Rat Control

by 5m Editor
9 February 2012, at 8:56am

UK - The Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use will be focussing on farmers and gamekeepers during 2012, to help them improve rat control efficacy and eliminate poor practice.

The campaign's programme will promote best practice when farmers and gamekeepers use rodenticides themselves, and increase access to Wildlife Aware accredited technicians for those who employ professional pest controllers. CRRU also warns that rodenticide misuse will increase the likelihood that second generation anticoagulants will be banned from some sectors of the market.

"The time has come for some plain speaking," says CRRU chairman Dr Alan Buckle. "When you meet farmers individually and tell them that up to 90 per cent of kestrels and owls on their farms are probably carrying residues of rodenticides as a direct result of their own or a neighbour's poor practice, they are genuinely shocked.

"However, the challenge shared by everyone involved in rural rat control - including rodenticide manufacturers, retailers and professional pest controllers - is to get this across to farmers and gamekeepers, to improve control methods across the board."

As the basis of its 2012 programme, CRRU offers four imperatives for the entire sector to get across to rural rodenticide users:

  • Rat populations must be controlled effectively for reasons of human health, animal health, waste reduction and fire prevention.
  • Wildlife populations, in particular predatory birds, can be endangered by unintended exposure to rodenticides and this must not be allowed to happen.
  • Rural misuse or abuse of rodenticides is highly likely to lead to restricted availability, or even total withdrawal, of rodenticide products, via EU legislation.
  • Responsible and effective control of rats are one and the same thing, and can be achieved cost-effectively by engaging a Wildlife Aware professional or, when farmers and gamekeepers use rodenticides themselves, by applying the CRRU code.

To increase the availability of Wildlife Aware pest controllers, CRRU is holding at least eight courses during 2012. The latest locations and dates are available here.