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May 21, 1932


Author Affiliations

South Bend, Ind.

JAMA. 1932;98(21):1831. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.02730470053030

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To the Editor:  —So much has appeared in The Journal during the past year regarding thallium poisoning, principally from the use of depilatory creams, that it may be of interest to note that probably the largest users of thallium are the state and federal governments in an effort to control wild rodents.In California, during 1928, 7,739,070 acres of land was treated for ground squirrels. More than 2,000,000 pounds of poisoned grain was used, of which 602,728 pounds was thallium treated (Linsdale, Jean M.: Facts Concerning the Use of Thallium in California to Poison Rodents—Its Destructiveness to Game Birds, Song Birds and Other Valuable Wild Life, Condor33:95 [May] 1931). The amount of thallium in this large amount of grain is not stated but it must be considerable. The other poison used is strychnine.As may be inferred from the title of Linsdale's article, naturalists are gravely concerned over

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