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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Control of ground squirrels in California using anticoagulant treated baits


Anticoagulant treated grain baits have been used to control vertebrate pest depredations in California for over 30 years. The use of anticoagulant treated baits has increased 7 times in the past 7 years; the majority for the use of ground squirrel, Spermophilus spp., control. Since 1968-69, an average of 1,747,828 net over 5,700,919 gross acres per year has been treated for ground squirrel control. Current use patterns for ground squirrel control with anticoagulant treated baits include: (1) Repeated spot baitings, and (2) exposure of bait in bait boxes. Experimental work and many years of operational field use have proven that anticoagulant treated baits have a place in effectively suppressing ground squirrel populations in localized areas, with little hazard to non-target animals. However, these baits have not proven to be a practical substitute for current techniques of suppressing ground squirrel populations over large areas, such as in rangeland situations.

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