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Rodenticides Threaten Wildlife: Cats and Dogs in Danger



Rodenticide is found to be life-threatening in cities. Assoc. Dr. Sevcan Aydin from Nişantaşı University Department of Genetics and Bioengineering said that if we think that rodenticides are used in the city and its surroundings in general, it is possible to see traces of poison in cats and dogs because the population in the city is dense with these two living species.

A report published in the journal Popular Science said rodenticides in cities threaten natural life. According to the report, a study in South Africa showed that rodenticides used in homes and restaurants indirectly threaten many wild animals. A survey of 41 different animal species in a National Park found rodenticide residues in 82 percent of these animals. The researchers estimate that the predators aren’t eating the poisons directly. Rather, the poisons are designed to work slowly in their target species, rats, who become sick over a period of days and end up as easy prey for predators.

A similar situation had previously been encountered in the US and it was revealed that the cause of poisoning of many wild animals in California was rodenticide used by illegal hemp producers.

Assoc. Dr. Sevcan Aydin said, “As rats enter our habitats, the method we develop to get rid of them is to put poisons in certain areas. But these poisons don't kill instantly. It makes the mice sluggish for a certain period of time and eventually kills them. As rats enter our habitats, the method we develop to get rid of them is to put poisons in certain areas. But these poisons don't kill instantly. Drugs have other factors on the sluggish rats before they die from the effect of it. One of them is making rats easier prey. One of them is making mice easier prey. The venom and toxic substances found in easily hunted mice pass to the predator and accumulate in the higher level on the food chain after a while. So, different diseases arise, and it may even result in death of these predators.”

ACCUMULATION INCREASES IN THE MOUSE-CAT-DOG TRIANGLE

Sevcan Aydın, who points out that cats and dogs can also be affected by mouse poisons in cities, said “When we look at this issue from the point of view of Turkey, if we think that rodenticides are used generally in and around the city, it is possible to see traces of poison in these two species because the population of cats and dogs is high in the city.”

PROPOSAL TO REGULATE RODENTICIDE USE

Assoc. Dr. Aydın emphasized that interventions on the ecology chain can produce different results and said, “a regulation should be introduced to the use of rodenticide. This is because there are different ways to remove mice from our environment. Examples of this can be used in different species, such as burning coffee for bees that disturb us in the summer or exposing smoke for flies. Methods such as scent that mice do not like or putting plants around can be developed,”
Assoc. Dr. Aydın concluded his remarks as follows:

“In addition, the removal with the sound waves system can be expanded. Since this method is a sound that people can hear, it is appropriate to be found in places where rats are denser or to be used in basements.”

Release date: 02.12.2019