U.S.Fish and Wildlife Service  241 FW 9, Exhibit 1 Program Guidance for Specific Activities

FWM#:         270 (new)
Date:            September 30, 1996
Series:          Occupational Safety and Health
Part 241:       Safety Operations
Originating Office:  Office of Safety and Health  
Program Guidance for Specific Wildlife Handling and Inspection Activities

1. 1 Birds.

A. Psittacosis, histoplasmosis, and other avian diseases are respiratory hazards encountered during handling or inspection of live birds and/or dead bird specimens. Bites, scratches, and excessive noise are common hazards associated with the handling or inspection of live birds.

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) face shields and anti-fog goggles.

(3) latex gloves worn under heavy rubber gloves.

(4) disposable HEPA filter respirator (99.7% efficiency at 0.3 microns) meeting National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) certification as documented under 42 CFR 84.

(5) hearing protection if noise levels exceed 85 decibels, A-weighted scale (dBA).

1.2 Coral.

A. Live.

(1) The hazards associated with handling or inspecting live coral include scrapes and abrasions incurred during direct handling of the specimen. An additional concern is skin irritation due to contact with the stinging cells of live coral or the accompanying water.

(2) PPE may include tear resistant gloves.

B. Dead.

(1) The hazards associated with handling dead and/or raw coral are scrapes and/or abrasions which may occur during direct handling of the specimen. 241 FW 10

(2) PPE may include leather gloves.

1.3 Handicraft Shipments.

A. Handicraft shipments include all types of primitive or native works of art. These items may be composed of any wildlife product including skulls, teeth, and skins. The hazards associated with this type of shipment include residual biological material from untreated items, fumigants or pesticides, and infective bacterial diseases (i.e., anthrax).

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) latex gloves worn under heavy rubber gloves.

(3) disposable REPA filter respirator meeting NIOSH certification under 42 CFR 84.

NOTE: the presence of pesticide odors or residues will require upgrading PPE to a respirator, or anti-fog goggles, or implementation of a non-disposable half- face or full-face silicone NIOSH approved respirator with disposable HEPA/organic vapor(OV)/pesticide/acid gas cartridges.

C. Contaminated clothing must be disposed of via prescribed biohazard waste procedures.

1.4 Live Fish and Invertebrates.

A. The primary hazards associated with handling fish and invertebrates include puncture wounds, bites, and mechanical abrasions. Secondary hazards include bacterial infections, anaphylaxis, and other human responses to toxins.

NOTE: Live fish and invertebrate shipments may contain species armed with spines, teeth, and toxins.

B. PPE may include tear resistant gloves.

1.5 Live Mammals (excluding nonhuman primates).

A. Direct contact with live mammals may result in bites, scratches, transfer of superficial bacterial infections, transmission of parasites or other vector-borne diseases (e.g., Lyme Disease), respiratory hazards (e.g., tuberculosis, anthrax, etc.), viral infections (e.g., rabies, hantavirus, etc.), human body fluids on packing containers (i.e., bloodborne pathogens), or allergic responses. NOTE: Live mammal shipments may contain any species of mammal.

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) face shields and anti-fog goggles.

(3) latex gloves worn under leather gloves or latex gloves worn under leather gauntlet.

(4) disposable REPA filter respirator meeting NIOSH certification 42 CFR 84.

C. Other:

(1) Evidence of rodents suggests potential Hantavirus concerns. Upgrade PPE protection to respirator, or anti- fog goggles, or implementation of a non- disposable half-face silicone or full- face NIOSH approved respirator with disposable REPA/OV/pesticide/acid gas cartridges.

(2) Refer to 242 FW 5 for instruction regarding Lyme Disease.

(3) Contaminated clothing must be disposed of via prescribed biohazard waste procedures.

1.6 Live Reptiles (excluding venomous species).

A. Direct contact with live reptiles may result in bites, scratches, transfer of superficial bacterial or fungal infections, exposure to parasites or other vector borne diseases (e.g., Lyrne Disease), and bacterial hazards (e.g., Salmonella). Other hazards include human body fluids on packing containers (i.e., bloodborne pathogens). NOTE: Live reptile shipments may contain any species of reptile shipped individually or commingled with other wildlife.

B. PPE may include latex gloves worn under leather gloves (leather gauntlet as required). if contamination of the leather gloves occurs or is suspected, the leather gloves and latex gloves will be disposed of in the manner established by the Law Enforcement project manager or leader.

1.7 Nonhuman Primates.

A. Health concerns associated with nonhuman primate inspection include respiratory, dermal, and ocular hazards. The primary respiratory and ocular hazard is tuberculosis. Tuberculosis- containing aerosol may become airborne as infected wildlife breathe, cough, or spit. Dermal hazards include a vast array of bacterial and viral diseases such as filoviruses. Direct contact may result in bites and potential transfer of bloodborne diseases (e.g., Simian Immunodeficiency Virus).

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) face shields or anti-fog goggles.

(3) latex gloves worn under tear resistant gloves.

(4) disposable HEPA filter respirator meeting NIOSH certification 42 CFR 84.

(5) hearing protection if noise levels exceed 85 dBa, time-weighted average (TWA).

(6) Contaminated clothing must be disposed of via prescribed biohazard waste procedures.

1.8 Poisoned Carcasses.

A. The primary hazards associated with poisoned carcass investigations are dermal and respiratory contact of the spected pesticide. Secondary concerns are infectious agents, parasites, and hazardous environments.

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) non-disposable full-face, silicone, NIOSH approved respirator, with disposable HEPA/OV/pesticide/acid gas cartridges.

(3) latex gloves worn under tear resistant gloves.

(4) Contaminated clothing must be disposed of via prescribed biohazard or hazardous waste procedures.

1.9 Poisonous Arthropods.

A. The hazards associated with handling or inspecting live poisonous arthropods are bites, stings, and irritating hairs.

B. PPE may include leather gloves.

NOTE: Eye protection and non-disposable full-face, silicone, NIOSH approved respirator, with HEPA filter should be available when handling arthropods which tend to throw irritating hairs.

1.10 Trophy Shipments.

A. The release of fumigants and pesticides may occur during the opening of shipping containers and may continually be emitted, resulting in a hazardous atmosphere. This, along with physical injuries are primary hazards of the inspection process. There are also potential pesticide exposures associated with the handling, inspection, and storage of trophy specimens.

B. PPE may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) face shield or anti-fog goggles.

(3) latex gloves worn under tear resistant gloves.

(4) non-disposable half-face or full- face silicone, NIOSH approved respirator, with disposable HEPA/OV/pesticide/acid gas cartridges.

1.11 Venomous Live Reptiles.

A. Envenomation through bites, or dermal contact with crystallized or liquid venom are hazards. Secondary concerns include bacterial or fungal infections via dermal contact.

B. PPE may include:

(1) face shields or anti-fog goggles.

(2) leather gloves or gauntlets. NOTE: If contamination of the leather gloves occurs or is suspected, the gloves will be disposed of as a biohazard waste.

1.12 Venomous Reptile Products.

A. Dermal contact with crystallized venom is a hazard. Venom may be present on the fangs incorporated in finished reptile products.

B. PPE may include: leather gloves. NOTE: If contamination of the leather gloves occurs or is suspected, the gloves will be disposed of as a biohazard waste.

1.13 Wildlife Parts and Products.

A. Unfinished shipments that consist of wildlife parts and products may contain raw meat, tissue, blood, and untreated or incorrectly treated taxidermy items. Hazards associated with unfinished shipments include residual biological material, fumigants, pesticides, and infectious agents.

B. PPE for unfinished or improperly finished items may include:

(1) a spun-bonded polypropylene disposable total body coverall with hood, elastic wrists, and booties.

(2) face shields or anti-fog goggles.

(3) latex gloves worn under tear resistant gloves.

(4) disposable HEPA filter respirator meeting NIOSH certification.

(5) Contaminated clothing must be disposed of via prescribed biohazard waste procedures.


For additional information regarding this Web page, contact Krista Bibb, in the Division of Policy and Directives Management, at Krista_Bibb@fws.gov


Return to 241 FW 9
Visit the Division of PDM Directives Home Page
Visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Home Page