All our posts have been centered on large animals, illustrating carbofuran poisoning in lions, hyenas and vultures. The explanation behind this lies in effective exposure to the chemical pesticide.Their mode of feeding-carnivorous and scavenging -therefore accords these organisms the highest vulnerability. This just proves that ingestion or swallowing is the most effective way of getting the toxic substance into a living organisms body system. Further, fish have also been reported to have been killed through Furadan poisoning, other birds (non-vulturine), wildebeests, warthogs, crocodiles, just to mention those.
Clearly, out of the 8 divisions (technically and more precisely reffered to as phyla, these are sponges, worms, insects, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) of the members of the Animal Kingdom, it is not just fish,mammals,birds and reptiles that are suffering but also the other mentioned in brackets but sponges. Only the sponges can be said at a lower risk given that they are oceanic rather than part of inland biodiversty. The large volume of the oceanic waters in which they are found also confers them some safety since it would require more carbofuran than can be produced on earth at the present time to get the waters concentrated eneough to destroy the sponges. This post will therefore focus on alleged or reported highly suspected carbofuran poisoning cases for smaller or inconspicuous or ignored animals.
Insects and their likes, which constitute the division (phylum) Arthropoda-the largest animal group constituting 95% of the animals- in as much as pesticides are designed to kill them, I would say, have been ignored. I believe no organism is too abundant not to be destroyed altogether or be driven to extinction. In one of the posts in another of wildlife direct’s blogs, there were lions reported to have died from Furadan poisoning. Shockingly but also reported nonetheless was that flies that came to get tit bits of the fouled carcasses also died on their meal. Well, I have also been able to get reports that Honey bees have died of Furadan poisoning in Naivasha and Kitui, Kenya. Honey bees not only make a highly nutritious and medicinal substance, honey ,but they are also very important in pollination of our rops and other plants. In Naivasha, Kenya, Furadan is used to kill termites and is proclaimed even more effective than the pesticides intended to kill termites. In Busia, Bunyala, the Leech was a feared worm by the paddy field workers and the blood sucker would stick on one’s upper legs and suck blood till one used a knife to cut it off. Though a worm, it falls in a different category and it poses no threat to rice or any other crop. Presently, the farmers have noted the worm has declined and not as common as it used to be in the paddy fields. A few cannot stop thinking that Furadan may be behind the decline in the leech numbers.
If I recall clearly, carbofuran is branded a nematicide. But what has been witnessed is an indiscriminate mortality situation cutting across the entire animal kingdom. Carbofuran leaves a lot to be desired as far as its pesticidal role is concerned. It is a chemical pesticide that leaves many questions unanswwered such as if it can cause secondary poisoning and the scope of the broad spectrum of living things that it can wipe out. There is great need for more intensive testing of the effects of the pesticide and if at all it has to remain in use as a pesticide, it should prove its ‘innocence’ and subsequently may be win again the confidence of wildlife conservationists.