Fenthion vertebrate control products (pest bird control)

Fenthion (O,O-dimethyl O-4-methylthio-m-tolylphosphorothioate) is a broad spectrum organophosphorus (OP) pesticide that is used as an insecticide as well as to control pest birds (avicide). Birds are more sensitive to the effects of fenthion than mammals.

Fenthion is applied in a gel or grease formulation to the roosting areas of pest bird species. It is rapidly absorbed across the skin of exposed birds. The restricted use of this chemical and label directions are designed to minimise exposure of non-target animals and birds to this compound.

Fenthion vertebrate pest control products have no intrinsic selectivity for the target birds and particular skills and knowledge required to correctly use products to avoid intoxication of non-target birds and animals. The APVMA has determined that it is in the public interest for vertebrate pest control products containing fenthion to be declared restricted chemical products (RCPs), effective 16 December 2009. Restricted chemicals may only be supplied to or used by an authorised person.

Fenthion bird control products are registered for the control of pest populations of domestic pigeons (also known as feral pigeons or rock pigeons), sparrows, and Indian Mynahs (also known as Common Mynahs).

Fenthion vertebrate control products are registered for use in internal enclosed areas of industrial and commercial situations (not any food preparation areas). Other uses could be authorised by an APVMA permit. Label instructions include requirements for; posting of notices warning that fenthion is being used, removal and safe, humane disposal of dead or dying birds and removal of any remaining fenthion product within 7 days of application.

The revised label instructions state that product users must notify the APVMA Adverse Experience Program if any non-target birds or animals have been found to have been affected.

Fenthion products registered for use on non-vertebrate pests (such as insects) have not been restricted. They may not be used to control birds and there are no label directions for bird control.

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