Arsenic and DDT residues at cattle dip yards


Soil at many cattle tick dip sites is contaminated due to past use of arsenic and DDT.

Arsenic was used as the tickicide in the dip solution up until 1955 when the ticks became resistant to it.

DDT, an organochlorine (OC) was then used until it too became ineffective in 1962. Since 1962 other much less persistent tickicides have been used to dip cattle.

Arsenic and DDT can still be found at high levels in the soil beside many dip baths today because they are very persistent compounds.

Topic include;

  • Where is the contamination?
  • Why do residues remain?
  • Can the residues spread?
  • Residue uptake by plants and animals
  • Reducing the risk of organochlorine chemicals in beef
  • Human health risks
  • Is the NORM program working?


Primefact 1371 Third Edition

Published: Jul 2017