Date of this Version
Witmer, G., K. Horak, and R. Moulton. 2014. New rodenticides: an update on recent research trials. Proceedings of the Wildlife Damage Management Conference 15: 79-85.
Rodents cause substantial amounts of damage and losses of foodstuffs around the world. While various methods are used to reduce damage and losses to rodents, rodenticides remain the most important tool in the toolbox. However, like all tools, rodenticides have advantages and disadvantages. Several considerations are shaping the future of rodenticide use. These include manufacturing and registration costs, concern about toxicity levels and non-target animal hazards, potential hazards to children, reduced effectiveness of some formulations, and humaneness to the targeted rodents. While there have been very few new developments in rodenticides in the last several decades, new formulations and active ingredients need to be investigated so that these concerns can be addressed. We are conducting studies on some new materials: sodium nitrite, lower concentrations of zinc phosphide, and two-active ingredient formulations (cholecalciferol plus diphacinone). Preliminary results are promising with a number of rodent species. Some materials (sodium nitrite and zinc phosphide) have been encapsulated to avoid low palatability and bait shyness issues. Preliminary cage study results are presented as well as proposed future studies.