Margate wants to introduce regulation on the use of pest toxins

Angela Paul recently spoke to the Margate Board of Commissioner about her dog’s Trouble death from poisoning.


MARGATE – City officials heard loud and clear complaints from local residents about suspected pet poisoning that could have resulted from local residents applying rodent control or from the extermination carried out when land was destroyed, and have decided to do something about it to do.

According to attorney John Scott Abbott, the city plans to introduce an ordinance at the next Board of Commissioners meeting that replicates rodent baiting regulations already contained in New Jersey’s administrative law.

Residents of all three Downbeach communities have complained about the spread of rabbits, which are considered vermin, and the poisoning of several dogs in Margate. Although autopsies were not performed on two dogs who died, their vets said they had symptoms of intoxication.

According to the city’s demolition ordinance, destruction is required before a building is razed to the ground. Abbott said the city will tighten regulations on the destruction and that contractors will now need to put up signage to notify residents of the area of ​​the destruction.

The state has laws regulating rodent extermination and baiting, which should be carried out by licensed extermination companies.

Abbott said the language in New Jersey Administrative Code 7: 30-10.3 would be added to city ordinances to provide additional protection for wildlife, pets, and children.

“It is derived from state law, but it will add more publicity and awareness to the people of Margate that not just dropping pellets but using bait boxes,” he said. “There are quite a few regulations in place to try to prevent or prevent the ingestion of poison by your pet.”

Abbott said he has two dogs and puts his heart into researching the regulations. Administrator Richard Deaney and building inspector Jim Galantino contributed to the ordinance, he said.

“It’s already in state law, just repeated it,” Deaney said.

State ordinance requires eradication using tamper-evident bait boxes in areas accessible to pets, domestic animals, and untargeted wildlife or children. The bait boxes must contain a brand name, an EPA registration number, an active ingredient content and a label that warns of dangerous poison. The bait box must be observed directly from the applicator and removed after the treatment is complete.

Abbott said he Googled rodent venom and found that venom pellets are available in large quantities on the Internet and that it is possible for homeowners to treat their property to rid the area of ​​rabbits eating their delicate flowers.

Downbeach residents take control of the rabbit proliferation to the detriment of neighborhood pets.

“I don’t know who would do that,” he said.

Abbott said the new regulation may not solve the problem, but it would raise awareness that homeowners should refrain from this practice.

“Hopefully the word will get around, not just expel poison that the dog or cat can ingest from someone,” he said.

Commissioner Maury Blumberg said this month’s community letter and subsequent newsletters would contain a public notice on the matter. Notices will also be posted on the city’s social media pages.

Resident Mary Slomine told commissioners on September 23 that the poisons not only kill rabbits and dogs, but are also dangerous to humans and the environment.

“I think it’s an environmental problem,” she said, because rainwater carries toxic chemicals into the rainwater system that drains into the bay and into the sea, which further threatens marine life.

Resident Diva Minter asked how the city would enforce the ordinance.

“Enforcement is key,” she said, recommending the city robo-call to announce the new policy. “It is a threat to targeted and untargeted wildlife and pets. It’s not about dogs or other wild animals dying, but about us and our ecosystem. “

She said everyone who lives on the island should be a good environmentalist.

“We understand the need to eliminate rodents when a building is demolished to protect neighboring properties,” said Steve Jasiecki, chair of the Margate Green Sustainable Team. “But an absolutely safe and reliable method must be used. Empty lots are very attractive for people to take their dogs with them to go about their business. These properties must be safe for people and their pets. “

He said the green team is discouraging the use of pesticides and herbicides and other chemicals on lawns.

“We like to promote local landscaping. We don’t know what effects these chemicals have on pets when they walk on the lawn. The accumulated amount of fertilizers and toxins that wash down the gullies and the bay is also very detrimental to the wetland ecosystem, ”he said.

Angela Paul, whose dog Trouble died of poisoning a month ago, said she didn’t use social media and therefore didn’t know dogs are dying. She said the city should notify every household by mail, not just post it on social media or in a newsletter.

Paul said she thinks the residents are throwing out the poisons because they don’t want the rabbits to eat their flowers.

“You can’t just write a regulation and say it’s illegal,” she said. “You won’t stop. You have to educate the public about alternatives. “

Margate is the first community in the Downbeach area to consider legislation to prevent pet poisoning.

Longport addressed the problem by hosting a training event on planting rabbit-resistant plants and flowers.

Longport residents are learning to plant flowers that rabbits will not eat.

Jasiecki said Sustainable Margate has offered landscaping programs in the past and even installed a native plant demonstration garden in the Margate Municipal Building and is considering offering a new series that will address this issue.

Ventnor, where rabbit infestations are not as common, did not address the problem.

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