Wildlife Damage Management, Internet Center for


Date of this Version

September 1968


I'm going to speak about bird baits that are produced by the rodent-control fund. In my estimation, there are about six criteria for mixing good, high quality bait materials. The first one would be a toxicant. This is the first thing people talk or think about. I would assume that you would select a toxicant that has the quality to do the intended job. The second point is the sticker. So our criteria for a sticker are as follows: good adhering qualities, good spreading qualities (by this I mean if you introduce the toxicant into a sticker as is often done-we don't do this—you must be able to disperse this material in either a suspension or in a solution so that you get an even distribution over the bait material), good sacking quality (that is, a material you can sack directly from the mixer or from whatever equipment you use; having to take a material out for instance in a production run and spreading it to dry just doesn't lend itself to any type of production), good storage qualities (it can't harden the material in the bag if you must store it for a long period of time, nor should it change any of the color, odor, or taste characteristics of the bait material), good lasting quality in the field (we wish a material to last more than past the first rain storm). The third point is mixing procedure. This of course depends on the type of equipment you have. But in general our practice is to dry mix the toxicant and bait materials together. A fourth point is housekeeping. I have seen an awful lot of bait material; and one of the things that is commonly done in the feed industry, or used to be, was that you didn't throw things away. If you could sweep it up and remix it into some other preparation, this was an acceptable practice. It is not an ac-ceptable practice in mixing quality bait materials. We also have another criteria we think of as bags. There are criteria for the type of bag. I am not at all pleased with a multi-wall paper bag. I know commercial industry has gone with this; but as Bemus has illustrated to me, you can take a multi-wall paper bag and drop it from your shoulder 25 times and you've had it. You can take a burlap bag or a bag with 7-ounce burlap in it, and drop it all day long from your shoulder, and still use the bag with no apparent effect from the jarring. Probably the most important thing in bait mixing, and if there is any secret to bait mixing, and I'm a bug on this, it's selection of the bait material. I might say that we do not use materials of a quality less than human consumption. We do not consider number one corn good enough; it contains too much trash and other materials to be suitable for bait material.