Wildlife Damage Management, Internet Center for


Date of this Version

September 1968


I'm going to talk about the toxicant, sodium fluoride. This, of course, is not new to anybody who's been in the pest control business. It's very common and is a material that is readily available to industry wherever you might be— sodium fluoride, NaF. Sodium fluoride was a material used in veterinary practice in its early days as a worming agent. When the first problems developed with the swine feeders, particularly with TGE (transmissible gastroenteritis), they were needing a toxicant that they could use to control the birds that were stealing feed out of the food bunkers and leaving their droppings there. Some birds died in the area, causing, the farmers felt, the disease TGE. Looking at the different toxicants we had available to us, the first was strychnine which is highly toxic to swine. That completely ruled it out because the least consumption of strychnine would mean sure death in the case of hogs. Then we found sodium fluoride, a material already used for worming, and that meant there was some tolerance to sodium fluoride in swine. It was then developed into a bait material that would be used at a level of 3% for lethal control of starlings.