U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced on Thursday that the EPA would reevaluate the use of M-44 devices to control wild animals that prey on livestock and other animals.
“I am announcing a withdrawal of EPA’s interim registration review decision on sodium cyanide, the compound used in M-44 devices to control wild predators,” he said. “This issue warrants further analysis and additional discussions by EPA with the registrants of this predacide. USDA is the primary registrant, along with five other state departments of agriculture: Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming.
“I look forward to continuing this dialogue to ensure U.S. livestock remain well-protected from dangerous predators while simultaneously minimizing off-target impacts on both humans and non-predatory animals.”
M-44s have been heavily protested by a variety of activist groups. The device uses bait on a spring powered ejector to propel a dose of sodium cyanide into an animal’s mouth. M-44s are heavily regulated by Wildlife Services but are a very efficient and humane tool to control predators, primarily coyotes.
The American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) fully supports the M-44 and Livestock Protection Collar. The M-44 and LPC are the most targeted and environmentally friendly predator control products available to producers, and ASI will work closely with the EPA and the administration as they conduct this further review.
American Sheep Industry Association / EPA