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San Luis Obispo County, California


Animal Damage Control

Historically the County Department of Agriculture has had an active vertebrate control program, focused upon assisting local growers and ranchers in controlling ground squirrels and other vertebrate pests detrimental to agriculture and public health. A major reduction of program began in the mid 1980's due to regulatory constraints and loss of registration of Compound 1080. (Property owners paid our department to apply Compound 1080, an acute toxicant, by horseback and air to their private property).

Although we have shifted away from direct control activities, we continue to act as an informational resource for both agriculturalists and the general public dealing with various vertebrate pests. This shift occurred for a number of reasons, including the loss of registration of commonly used rodenticides, increased ecological concerns and regulations regarding the use of certain rodenticides, and changing priorities of the Agricultural Commissioner. Despite these changes, we have maintained the Agricultural Commissioner’s traditional role and customer service through assisting ranchers and farmers in controlling vertebrate pests through training and education. Our office is no longer a supplier of California Department of Food
and Agriculture (CDFA) labeled oat groat based rodenticide baits: 0.01% Chlorophacinone, (a broadcast/scattered bait) and 0.005% Diphacinone
(used in bait stations). Link to bait station design.


  • Provide current information on vertebrate control methods.
  • Issue Operator Identification Numbers and Restricted Material Permits (both required as part of California’s pesticide regulatory program),
    allowing production agriculturalists to purchase rodenticide baits and educate users on the legal and safe use of rodenticides.
    Link to PUE page