Planning and Standard Operating Procedures for the Use of Rotenone in Fish Management: Rotenone SOP Manual, 2nd Edition

1 Introduction


Fisheries biologists rely on a wide variety of methods for the management and assessment of fish populations to maintain diverse and healthy aquatic ecosystems and high quality recreational fisheries. One of the most valuable tools is the botanical piscicide rotenone, which was first used in the United States in 1934 (Ball 1948; Lennon et al. 1971; Cumming 1975) and in Canada in 1937 (M’Gonigle and Smith 1938). Rotenone is a product of the bean family that has been used for centuries by native peoples from Southeast Asia and Central and South America in the collection of fish for food (Ling 2003).

The Rotenone SOP Manual 2nd edition is designed to provide fishery managers and others with procedures needed for carrying out restoration projects with rotenone in an effective and safe manner while meeting existing laws and regulations of all regulatory jurisdictions. The authors and reviewers of the manual represent a wide range of knowledge and experiences in using rotenone from several federal and state natural resource agencies throughout the United States and Norway.

Over the past several decades, the use of rotenone has become a concern to a variety of interests including environmental and animal rights groups (Williams 2004; Finlayson et al. 2005). The American Fisheries Society (AFS) recognized a need to respond to increased concerns and established the “Rotenone Stewardship Program” in 1993. In 2000, AFS used U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) Division of Federal Aid administrative funds to prepare and produce a manual on rotenone use for fisheries managers entitled, Rotenone Use in Fisheries Management—Administrative and Technical Guidelines Manual (Finlayson et al. 2000). The first edition of the Rotenone SOP Manual (Finlayson et al. 2010) was a revision and expansion of the 2000 manual because the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (2007) required it as part of the reregistration process for rotenone. The current 2nd edition incorporates further technical and regulatory developments in rotenone use that have occurred since the 1st edition was published in 2010.

Adhering to the rotenone formulation (product) label and the Rotenone SOP Manual will result in the safe and effective use of rotenone for fish management while reducing the risks and providing adequate protection for public health and the environment. Rotenone is classified as a Restricted Use Pesticide and as such, the Certified Applicator is responsible for ensuring that all applicable laws, regulations, and label instructions are followed.