Action Alert


Help End Senseless Poisoning of Coyotes and other Wildlife by Compound 1080 and Sodium Cyanide M-44s 

~Support H.R. 5643 ~

As citizens concerned for the welfare of our wildlife and for the health of our environment, we have a big opportunity to make a huge difference.

actionpoisons.compound1080.jpgRepresentatives DeFazio (OR) and Campbell (CA) have introduced H.R. 5643: the Compound 1080 and Sodium Cyanide Elimination Act. This federal bill would effectively ban two deadly poisons — sodium fluoroacetate (commonly known as Compound 1080 and used in the “Livestock Protection Collars” strapped on the necks of sheep or goats that spill the poison when punctured) and sodium cyanide (commonly used in M-44 “coyote-getter” baited poison ejector devices) — which are used primarily by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services program to kill coyotes, foxes, and other wild animals perceived as threats to livestock. In 2008, these two poisons killed nearly 13,000 animals, and persisted in sensitive habitats poisoning our environment.

actionpoisons.lamb.jpgBanned by previous administrations (and then later re-legalized as a result of pressure from agricultural and livestock interest groups), these poisons have been condemned as cruel, indiscriminate, and dangerous. Non-target victims include domestic dogs, gray wolves, federally protected birds of prey, and even humans.

Because of the dangers and cruelty associated with these poisons, citizens in California (1998) and Washington State (2000) passed ballot initiatives that ban M-44s and Livestock Protection Collars (LPCs) containing Compound 1080. In 1998, after intense public debate, Wildlife Services’ program withdrew the agency’s registration for use of LPCs containing Compound 1080 in Oregon.


Now we have an opportunity to ban these two deadly poisons! Your voice is needed. Write to your Congressional Representative and urge him or her to protect wildlife from cruel and dangerous poisons by supporting and co-sponsoring H.R. 5643- the Compound 1080 and M-44 Elimination Act.

actionpoisons.deadcoy.jpgIf you feel your Representative is not receptive to wildlife issues, consider that after 9/11 the FBI listed sodium fluoroacetate as “a highly toxic pesticide judged most likely to be used by terrorists or for malicious intent.” According to the FBI, the main criteria for a poison being added to the list are “high dermal or inhalation toxicity, common malicious use reported, and prior use by terrorists.” The FBI, the EPA, and the World Health Organization classify Compound 1080 as an “extremely hazardous toxic pesticide.” 

Yet our tax dollars continue to subsidize the use of these poisons while federal audits by the Office of the Inspector General found that there is improper and unaccountable stockpiling of these lethal substances.

TO SUBMIT COMMENTS ON THIS BILL (and to see if your Representative is already a co-sponsor):


Points to Include in Your Letter:

  • Compound 1080 and M-44s containing sodium cyanide are extremely dangerous and inhumane; death by Compound 1080 is horrific, excruciating, and slow (it usually takes between 3 and 15 hours). Exposure can result in cardiac failure, progressive failure of the central nervous system, or respiratory arrest following severe prolonged convulsions;
  • Compound 1080 is one of the deadliest poisons on earth and has no antidote;
  • Livestock Protection Collars are frequently punctured on barbed wire, rocks, and vegetation, spilling the toxin into the environment; animals killed by Compound 1080 are often not found, and their bodies poison other scavengers—including federally protected species;
  • The EPA classifies Compound 1080 as an “extremely hazardous” toxin that poses a significant hazard to human health and safety and to non-target wildlife. It was for these reasons that the EPA banned Compound 1080 throughout the United States in 1972;
  • Compound 1080 is a potential terrorist threat to water and food supplies; according to its own records, Wildlife Services cannot account for all the Compound 1080 LPCs it uses;
  • In addition to these poisons’ toll on wildlife, they put public safety at risk; hundreds of pet dogs each year are harmed or killed by M-44s, and humans have also been severely injured by accidentally triggering M-44s or handling poisoned pets;
  • Paradoxically, killing coyotes can increase their numbers;
  • Rather than killing predators ranchers should make better use of good husbandry practices such guard animals, electronic sound and light devices, penning animals as night, lambing in structures, promptly removing any carcasses and fencing appropriately;
  • Scientific research shows that is makes more economic sense to implement long-term predator deterrents rather than killing coyotes and other predators each year.

Thank you for helping to end senseless poisoning of coyotes and other wildlife by Compound 1080 and sodium cyanide M-44s!

Camilla H. Fox
Executive Director
Project Coyote


More Information about H.R. 5643 & Compound 1080, Sodium Cyanide M-44s, USDA Wildlife Services & Alternatives to Poisoning/Subsidized Predator Control:

Open Congress bill tracking website (view bill, track movement, see list of bill co-sponsors):

YouTube video ~ "Two Killers that Need to Go: The Case Against Poisoning our Wildlife and Pets"

Predator Defense:

Cooperative Problem Solving: the Marin Livestock Protection Program

Making Peace with Coyote

Coyotes in Our Midst: Coexisting with an Adaptable and Resilient Carnivore (Download a free copy of this book co-authored by Project Coyote Executive Director, Camilla Fox at):


Christine Stevens Wildlife Award Recipient: Camilla Fox


Project Coyote is a non-profit fiscally sponsored project of Earth Island Institute that promotes educated coexistence between people and coyotes and advocates on behalf of coyotes and other native carnivores. We depend on our members and supporters to help us continue our work on behalf of America’s native “song dog.” Please join us today! All donations are tax-deductible. Visit us at www.ProjectCoyote.org.


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