WELLINGTON, Colo., March 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Over the past month there have been many press articles on the new feral hog bait approved by the EPA. In 2000, product development of Kaput Feral Hog Bait was initiated by Scimetrics Ltd. Corp., a family-owned small business based in Colorado. The objective was to develop a product to help curtail the now estimated $2 billion in crop damage across the US, as determined by the USDA. Work done at Fort Benning, Georgia, when extrapolated to Texas, showed that over 2 billion animals are consumed by feral hogs each year. These pigs eat everything from reptiles, amphibians, rodents, ground nesting birds such as bobwhite quail and pheasants, young sheep, goats, and calves. The amount of damage to landscaping and lawns amounts to millions of dollars each year. In addition, feral hogs carry numerous diseases that often infect humans: brucellosis, trichinosis, and pseudorabies for example. Each year many people who slaughter hogs are infected by hog-borne diseases. It is well documented that feral hog feces are contaminating groundwater with e-coli which is impacting human health.
The chemical in Kaput Feral Hog Bait is warfarin. Warfarin was discovered in the early 1900's and revolutionized rodent control as a valuable public health tool in preventing the spread of rodent-borne diseases such as plague, rat-bite fever, and some 30 other ailments. Warfarin was approved as a rodent control product in 1948. A few years later in 1954 warfarin was approved for human use. One of the first patients to use the drug was President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who took the medication after a heart attack.
Pigs are very susceptible to warfarin. For that reason, Scimetrics developed a formula over the past 17 years that is both palatable to feral hogs and contains a low dose of 0.005% to reduce risk to other animals. The concentration in the bait is 1/5 of the concentration found in rodent baits. The EPA was provided with numerous studies over the past 20 years demonstrating the low risk of low-dose warfarin to domestic animals and wildlife.
Kaput Feral Hog Bait contains a fat-soluble dye. After hogs eat the bait, within 24 hours the internal fat is colored dark blue. A hunter who shoots a pig will know quickly if it ate the bait or not, and should avoid consuming the hog meat. Warfarin residues in hog livers are below 5 mg/kg. The average daily dose for humans on warfarin ranges between 2-10 mg.
Most people are unaware of potentially toxic chemicals in their daily diets. All chemicals can be toxic which is why scientists use the term 'DOSE MAKES THE POISON'. To measure how toxic chemicals are an international benchmark is used, termed LD-50 or lethal dose to kill 50% of the test animals, which is normally assessed in rats. It is determined in milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight. As an example, the LD-50 for aspirin is 200 mg/kg, Vitamin D3 37 mg/kg, and caffeine 192 mg/kg. The LD-50 for Kaput Feral Hog Bait is 60,000 mg/kg. This shows how the toxicity is very low compared to products used at home. In the US, some 40,000 people die each year from overdoses of aspirin and pain killers.
There is public concern over hog bait toxicity to other animals and wildlife. Laboratory studies with warfarin were performed using the bait, in all cases using 5-10 times the warfarin concentration of the hog bait. The results showed no effects to scavenging birds, ferrets, alligators, ducks, and bobwhite quail. The US EPA classifies warfarin as "practically non-toxic to birds".
How much Kaput Feral Hog Bait would be required to harm a turkey? For a 15.4-lb bird, 29 lbs of bait eaten daily for 19 days; bobwhite quail, 27.5 lbs of bait eaten daily; a 44-lb dog, 13.2 lbs a day for 5 days; an 880-lb steer would have to eat 3520 lbs daily for 5 days (A.P. Meehan 1984). The lower the dose of any chemical, the lower the risk. When a person uses Kaput Feral Hog Bait according to label instructions mandated by the EPA, the risk of harming other animals is greatly reduced.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/scimetrics-ltd-corp-releases-facts-on-kaput-feral-hog-bait-300421327.html
SOURCE Scimetrics Ltd. Corp.