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Chapter 14 PESTICIDE & COSHH - Rabbit & mole products


Before we examine this, I must record that all my comments on products in this or any other article, are my views , in my circumstances of use, and should not be looked on as an endorsement or condemnation of one product or another.

I my travels, I find that there are three products used by Groundsmen & Greenkeepers to get rid of rabbits ( a 4th, very effective product, is lead injections at 800 mph!!!!)

  1. PHOSTOXIN
  2. TALUNEX

They both work on the principal that dampness - water - acting on the pellet will react and give off a poisonous gas. The rabbits breathe in this gas and die. If we breathe in this gas it would also kill us - all three are very toxic. For this reason, all are Part 1 Schedule 1 Poisons under the Poisons Rules 1982. If you buy these products you must be able convince the seller that you are competent and detail where you are going to use it. If the pesticide is stolen, you will have to inform the Police immediately.

The first part of any RISK ASSESSMENT is to read the label carefully.


MAPP No 9315

Product PHOSTOXIN

Manufacturer Rentokil

Use A hydrogen phosphide generating compound used for killing

moles & rabbits

AI aluminium phosphide 57%

Mode of Action Hydrogen phosphide gas is produced when chemical is in contact with moisture.

Formulation Gas generating tablet

Hazard Warning VERY TOXIC by inhalation, in contact with skin and if swallowed

Special Instructions Only open outdoors in a well ventilated place and for immediate use.

Do not use in wet weather.

Always use recommended applicator if available

Wear suitable protective gloves (Synthetic rubber) when handling the product.

Do not use within 10 m of human or animal habitation.

DANGEROUS to fish.

HIGHLY FLAMMABLE.

.


MAPP No 17009

Product TALUNEX

Manufacturer Killgerm Chemicals

Use A hydrogen phosphide generating compound used for killing moles & rabbits

AI aluminium phosphide 57%

Mode of Action Hydrogen phosphide gas is produced when chemical is in contact with moisture.

Formulation Gas generating pellet for use with the Luxan Topex Applicator

Hazard Warning VERY TOXIC by inhalation, in contact with skin and if swallowed

Special Instructions Only open outdoors in a well ventilated place and for immediate use

Do not use in wet weather

Always use recommended applicator if available

Wear suitable protective gloves (Synthetic rubber) when handling the product

Do not use within 10 m of human or animal habitation

DANGEROUS to fish

HIGHLY FLAMMABLE


Having studied all the labels, you must then draw conclusions on what you have read, how and where it will be used and the competence of the operators available.

PROS CONS
PHOSTOXIN Easily applied to holes Tablet can be difficult to place down the hole
One tablet per hole Operators are exposed at all times during application
Slow acting - gas give off after hole is stopped
TALUNEX Easily applied to rabbit holes
Operator only exposed during attaching pellet cylinder to applicator
Exact measured dose per hole
Slow acting - gas give off after hole is stopped
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Looking only at the above, it would appear on the face of it that Talunex should be used - 'risk assessment must take the safer way'.

However, there is built into Risk Assessment, and incidentally the Environmental Assessments, a concept of REASONABLY PRACTICABLE, which is basically a cost/ benefit analysis. It could be that only one application of a more toxic product is as effective as many applications of a less toxic one, building into the equation exposure times as well as exposure values. Taken to the extreme, throwing sugar cubes down the rabbit hole is eminently safe but does not give control of the rabbit!

Evaluation must be made, after taking into account the above advantages and disadvantages, of the effectiveness of the applications.

TOTAL EXPOSURE=EXPOSURE X LENGTH OF EXPOSURE

There is no obvious black & white solution, you must look at your own circumstances.

Work Environment and Effectiveness of product must be a part of RISK ASSESSMENT.


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