“Say No to Rat Poison” speaker at the Farm on Wednesday

By Joyce Westner Nov. 14, 2023

November 15, 7:00pm – 8:30pm, “The Rat Poison Problem: How Rodenticides Are Harming Wildlife, Pets, and People”

Save Arlington Wildlife founder Laura Kiesel will talk on Wednesday about the string of high-profile wildlife deaths due to rat poisoning, such as Mystic River watershed bald eagle MK who died this past March. The talk is sponsored by a group of Winchester residents who got together to promote the banning of a particular type of rat poison. 


Rat poison usually is the main method for dealing with the recent increase in the rat population but, according to Kiesel, these poisons are killing local wildlife and pets and endanger young children, while not actually proving at all effective in reducing rodents.


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Kiesel will review facts about rodenticides and their effects on human health and the environment, while offering practical solutions people in Winchester and other towns can do to protect their communities from these dangerous poisons that will have positive ripple effects for the entire state.


Winchester Health Director Jennifer Murphy told the News back in the summer that the town has been working on lowering the number of bait boxes containing second generation anti-coagulant rodenticides (SGARs), and experimented with electric rat traps at the community gardens. 


Academically trained as a wildlife biologist, Kiesel is a naturalist, conservation advocate, and environmental journalist. Her articles and op-eds have appeared in Salon, the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, Earth Island Journal, Science, Inside Climate News, The Atlantic, and many other outlets. She is the founder of Save Arlington Wildlife, which seeds and mentors municipal-level grassroots movements looking to restrict rodenticides in their home communities.  


Disclosure: Joyce Westner is a sponsor of the talk.



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