ARIZONA NEWS

Grand Canyon National Park officials warn about dangers of rodent poison after bobcat death

Jan 3, 2024, 10:00 AM

A bobcat carries small rodent that appears to be dead in its mouth at night...

Rodent poison is banned at Grand Canyon National Park because it can endanger bobcats and other animals that feed on mice and rats. (National Park Service Photo)

(National Park Service Photo)

PHOENIX — Officials are reminding the public that rodent poison is prohibited at Grand Canyon National Park after a bobcat was found dead in the area recently.

The bobcat, which was found in Grand Canyon Village on the South Rim, died from high levels of rodenticide, the National Park Service said Tuesday.

Condors, coyotes, foxes, mule deer and chipmunks have also been killed by rodent poison in recent years, often without directly consuming the deadly chemicals.

Why is rodenticide banned at Grand Canyon National Park?

Using poison to eliminate rodent pests can create unintended consequences, park officials said. It can contaminate the environment and endanger animals up the food chain that feed on poisoned mice and rats.

It’s also potentially harmful to humans — especially children — and pets.

As a result, rodent poison is banned at the Grand Canyon except in specific situations when officials deem it necessary to mitigate disease transmission.

How can rodents be controlled at Grand Canyon without poison?

The National Park Service offers a rat poison pickup and removal service, with no questions asked, from homes or workplaces at the Grand Canyon.

Area residents and businesses also can check out kits that include supplies and guidance for safely removing rodent pests without the use of poisons.

Those interested in rodenticide removal or a rodent kit can contact National Park Service wildlife biologists by emailing brandon_holton@nps.gov or brady_dunne@nps.gov.

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Grand Canyon National Park officials warn about dangers of rodent poison after bobcat death