A revolutionary new approach to rodent pest control


In 1284, while the town of Hamelin was suffering from a rat infestation, a man dressed in pied clothing appeared, claiming to be a rat-catcher. He promised the townsmen a solution for their problem with the rats. The townsmen, in turn, promised to pay him for the removal of the rats. The man accepted and played a musical pipe to lure the rats with a song into the Weser River, where all but one drowned. Despite his success, the people reneged on their promise and refused to pay the rat-catcher the full amount of money. The man left the town angrily but vowed to return some time later, seeking revenge. On Saint John and Paul's day, while the inhabitants were in church, he played his pipe yet again, dressed in green, like a hunter, this time attracting the children of Hamelin. One hundred and thirty boys and girls followed him out of the town, where they were lured into a cave and never seen again. Depending on the version, at most three children remained behind. One of the children was lame and could not follow quickly enough, the second was deaf and followed the other children out of curiosity, and the last was blind and unable to see where they were going. These three informed the villagers of what had happened when they came out of the church.

Another version relates that the Pied Piper led the children into following him to the top of Kopparberg Hill, where he took them to a beautiful land and had his wicked way, or a place called Kopparberg Mountain. This version states that the Piper returned the children after payment, or that he returned the children after the villagers paid several times the original amount of gold.

Fast forward to the present and we are again in a mess with rat control. This time we have allowed multi-feeding of poisons and allowed the rats through their mother's milk to transfer immunity to the next generation. This in time has a cumulative effect and results in rats that are tolerant to the currently licensed products. Thankfully the most commonly used toxin - warfarin - has been banned by the EU for some applications from 01.05.2014. The even more toxic compounds - the second-generation anticoagulants are due for review in a few years' time. There are elements of the chemical manufacturing businesses and the pest control industry who are lobbying politicians to allow them to use even more toxic concentrations of these products. This will just accelerate the rate of tolerance and resistance to these compounds - in short, it is an extremely irresponsible approach and is based on profits not pest control efficacy or human safety. Using our system society will once again be put back in control of the pest problem. Our product will humanely kill these current poison-tolerant rats and give us a chance to reset the rodent control clock.

PPDA has achieved the following:

  1. Extended the IP cover by filing under PCT to cover 4.3 Billion people UK, EU, USA, China, India, NZ, Australia, Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong.
  2. We have a better understanding of the EU regulatory requirements for the registration of PiedPiper’s cholecalciferol product. In addition, we made the decision at the end of the project to proceed with registration in New Zealand and have the infrastructure and consultancy in place to enable registration in the new year 2017.
  3. PCD development and testing this has been completed – the latest amendments to the design were agreed at a meeting at Schipol Ibis hotel in May. We have also finalised a second PCD for data collection that was started in PiedPiper and continued between the end of PiedPiper and the beginning of PiedPiper DA – this is called Catch 3 and has a high-end microprocessor for data acquisition.
  4. Field trials – The Kenyatta Univer sity trials have been confirmed as successful and are currently in preparation for an international journal - I have seen a draft of the August work - in November and once published will upload a link to this website.

    These were our key goals for PiedPiperDA. All were achieved with the exception of the field trials which were all set up to be done with ethical approvals and the relevant licencing documentation.
  5. Outside of PPDA project, Kenyatta University carried out successful field trials. They also carried out some trap shyness trials to see if the rats were frightened off or avoided the PCD’s – they were not.
  6. We are currently working on a New Zealand registration for PiedPiper cholecalciferol and are also working closely with the trusts in NZ that are involved in the ZIP project – Zero Invasive Predators. This project is in conjunction with the announcement of John Key – Prime Minister of NZ who has set the target of NZ being predator free by 2050. This includes rats, possums, and stoats as well as all other non-indigenous species. www.zip.org.nz/#intro
  7. The trials we were not able to undertake in Paris will be carried out in the new year and we are also in the process of setting up NZ trials for Rattus rattus and Rattus Norvegicus. As the trial results and registrations are completed and approved we will also move on to other molecules as well as offering a custom service for companies with existing molecules.
  8. PiedPiper is to be commercialised by Biotronics Ltd who as a UK company have in the light of the Brexit vote we believe that the best way forward is to move the company and project outside the UK.

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