Risk of Using Rat Poison

December 16th, 2009

Read merrilyn’s  ‘Organic Rat Poison’ for a homemade rat poison idea.  This post gives some organic solutions to  the problem of rats and mice.

About a week ago I saw a commercial pest eradication van leaving our hotel grounds in Glenfield. I hadn’t seen the driver at work, so I wasn’t sure what he was up to. Was it going to be a fumigation of our rooms, or was he here to lay poison for rats. Either way, I thought it would mean trouble. After a few days I could taste poison  around the hotel. My vision was affected. For days it was blurred and my eyes bloodshot and burning. I had terrible pain in the heart when lying down. This, for me, is  always a symptom of  chemical poisoning, usually rat poison. I had a serious headache, nausea and a runny nose. I also had several days with diaorrhea, brought on by the intestinal flora being upset and the acidophillus being killed off. My joints seemed frozen when I went to do my piano playing jobs. My mental function was also impaired. I could tell because piano pieces that I normally play well were a struggle to perform. The slowed up mental state and the frozen nature of my fingers and arms really was a big concern.

The poison  seemed to be everywhere – in the kitchen, and even out in the garden. I did my yoga-breathing exercise on the lawn- actually to alleviate the severe depression which had hit me this week. But yoga on the lawn, rather than improve the state of depression, was more effective in pin-pointing the reason for the depression which had come on for no apparent reason: No doubt now – this was for sure a chemically-induced state of depression due to  rat poison. I could taste it on my clothes.I could smell it on my hands. Touching my face after doing the yoga on the lawn caused a burning sensation on the face. Then I realized there were plastic containers which contained rat poison, in the garden, all about the property. One was situated only about 20 feet away from where I had been lying on the lawn for yoga exercises. I had seen a dead rat lying a few feet away from one rat-poison recepticle near the kitchen.

I showered and changed all my clothes immediately, although they were fresh just before doing the yoga. Now they were contaminated. I kept them apart from anything else I might touch or wear. Shoes were the vehicle for the transportation of the pesticide right through the hotel. After realizing this, I removed these before entering my room to avoid contaminating the carpet and everything in the room. Many people live here and walk to and fro the kitchen and other facilities, so before long, traces of the poison had been tramped all over the premises. Only a trace is needed for depression to set in.

Natural Health

I took care not to walk near the rubbish collection area – that seemed to be one of the worst places affected by the poison. I could taste it strongly in this area. Either there was more bait put around this area which I could not see, or rats were carrying the stuff here when they came about their inspections for the night.

Cats must surely be affected as they walk bare-foot over this territory. Birds must be afftected also, as they eat worms off the grass.

My guess is that many people have been suffering depression in our hotel this week. I have noticed that the mood generally hasn’t been as jolly as it usually is.

Now, about five days after putting up this post, I am sure the rodent man has put insecticide around the utility areas as well, which compounds the rat poison problem. These days, unfortunately, poisoning such as this is quite common in New Zealand;  Warehouses, shops, storage facilities, hotels, and other places of accommodation often use drastic methods  to kill insects and this outside method to kill rodents and insects as well.

I encountered  poisoning  such as this when I was in Australia, but at the time, New Zealand definately seemed cleaner and ‘greener’ as far as rodent killer and domestic insecticides went.  However, sadly, I think many Aucklanders  have become increasingly more like the Aussies in their widespread use of rat poison and ant and cockroach killer. We are conditioned by advertising on television and  the very existence of these chemical killer companies. The ‘spray and walk away’ approach teaches us to be generally uncaring and insensitive to our surroundings, our environment, and all the creatures who live in it. As I write this, people are hacking  out beautiful gardens and lopping down trees around Auckland to make less work for themselves and control nature, completely oblivious to the fact that the birds’ habitat is being destroyed and the wonderful colour of a garden is turned to dust. This kind of attitude seems to go hand in hand with toxic chemical usage.
Wellington, by comparison, seems to value its gardens and surroundings. While I was living in Wellington over a three year period, I never encountered problems with toxic chemicals. The cooler climate has something to do with it, but Wellingtonians do seem to be a more gentle, milder-natured lot who just love their city and its surroundings.

Just how one can educate people into respecting the beautiful environment we have here in Auckland, to take care of the gardens, instead of cutting them all out, for the benefit of all;  into not using poisons such as rat and ant and cockroach killers because of  detrimental effect on bird, animal and human life, is something which cannot be achieved in a day. Where are you, Helen Clarke?

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