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Anthraquinone repellent to reduce take of non-target birds from zinc phosphide rodenticide applications

By S. J. Werner, S. K. Tupper, S. E. Pettit, J. C. Carlson, G. M. Linz

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We evaluated anthraquinone as an avian repellent to reduce take of non-target birds from zinc phosphide rodenticide applications. We observed zero mortalities and no overt signs of zinc phosphide toxicosis among 20 Canada geese (Branta canadensis), 24 horned larks (Eremophila alpestris), and 47 ring-necked pheasants (Phasianus colchicus) offered baits treated with 1% or 2% anthraquinone and 2% zinc phosphide (target concentrations; wt/wt) during laboratory performance experiments. Thus, anthraquinone successfully prevented consumption of 2% zinc phosphide baits among non-target birds in captivity. We observed 10% mortality among black-tailed prairie dogs (i.e., target rodent; Cynomys ludovicianus) offered oats treated with 1% anthraquinone and 2% zinc phosphide, and 30% mortality among black-tailed prairie dogs offered oats treated with 2% anthraquinone and 2% zinc phosphide. Upon completion of our experiments, chemical analyses indicated that actual concentrations were 1.66% and 1.45% zinc phosphide among oats treated with1% anthraquinone+2% zinc phosphide, and 2% anthraquinone+2% zinc phosphide, respectively. We observed 24-37% repellency during a concentration-response test with black-tailed prairie dogs offered corn seeds treated with 0.5-4% anthraquinone (target concentrations; wt/wt). Thus, anthraquinone may affect consumption of repellent-treated rodenticide baits for black-tailed prairie dogs. Supplemental performance testing and field efficacy studies (e.g., 0.25-0.5% anthraquinone and 2% zinc phosphide, actual concentrations; wt/wt) are necessary for further development of an efficacious, bird-repellent rodenticide bait.

Date 2011
Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 135
Issue 1/2
Pages 146-153
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
DOI 10.1016/j.applanim.2011.09.009
Language English
Author Address United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services, National Wildlife Research Center, 4101 LaPorte Avenue, Fort Collins, CO 80521-2154, USA.
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal behavior
  2. Animal genetics
  3. Animal nutrition
  4. APEC countries
  5. Bait
  6. Behavior and behavior mechanisms
  7. Birds
  8. Canada
  9. Carnivores
  10. Chemicals
  11. Commonwealth of Nations
  12. Corn
  13. Death rate
  14. Developed countries
  15. Dogs
  16. Domesticated birds
  17. Feeding
  18. Feeding behavior
  19. Field crops
  20. Flowers
  21. Geese
  22. Grasses
  23. Maize
  24. Mammals
  25. mortality
  26. North America
  27. oats
  28. OECD countries
  29. peer-reviewed
  30. performance testing
  31. performance traits
  32. Pesticides and Drugs
  33. Pets and companion animals
  34. Plants
  35. Poisoning
  36. Poultry
  37. repellency
  38. Repellents and Attractants
  39. Research
  40. rodenticides
  41. Rodents
  42. seeds
  43. squirrels
  44. Studies
  45. Techniques
  46. toxicology
  47. United States of America
  48. zinc
  1. peer-reviewed