CHEMICAL CONTROL (POISONS)
(1) The use of poisons (rodenticides) to kill rodents is an important part of
any well-balanced rodent control program. It should be remembered, however, that
programs depending solely on poisoning render limited results and are temporary since
rodent populations quickly rebuild. Chemical control measures should be initiated in
conjunction with rodent proofing and environmental sanitation programs. Rodent
poisoning programs must be carefully planned and carefully executed. The fact that
such a program is about to begin should be given the widest possible dissemination
throughout the area in which the poison is to employed. This will help to prevent any
possible accidental poisoning of humans or pets. The initial poisoning should provide
complete coverage of the entire rodent-infested area. It may be useful to use pre-
baiting (use of nonpoisoned bait) for up to 6 days prior to beginning the actual poisoning
program in order to lessen the rodent's natural avoidance of strange objects and food.
Pre-baiting would also aid in determining the rodents' food preference, and increase the
chances of a successful control program.
(2) There are many rodenticides available; and their uses, effects, and
hazards vary greatly. Safety requirements for the protection of humans, pets, livestock,
poultry, and birds govern the selection of poisons and the methods in which they are
used. Much of the poison is required to be used outdoors and in other places where
access to it cannot be absolutely controlled, so any highly toxic poisons which do not
contain an vomiting agent should not be used except by trained and certified personnel.
These are personnel who have been specially trained in the safe, effective, and
economical use of pesticides, and who have received certification from the command
entomologist. Always read the pesticide label of the rodenticide to be used.
(3) Chemicals used in military rodent control programs are both standard and
nonstandard. A standard rodenticide is one of which has been assigned a national
stock number and which is available through normal supply channels. A nonstandard
item is one that must be justified for a specific purpose and purchased from nonmilitary
sources. Figure 3-7 lists the standard rodenticides commonly used in military pest