Barnett Rattner, Ph.D.


Dr. Barnett Rattner is an ecotoxicologist. He conducts hypothesis-driven laboratory and field investigations, risk assessments and scholarly evaluations on the toxicity of legacy and contemporary pollutants (industrial contaminants, metals, pesticides, petroleum crude oil) to wildlife and the environment. His current focus is on exposure and adverse effects of anticoagulant rodenticides, flame retardants and pharmaceuticals, comparative toxicology, non-target secondary poisoning associated with rodenticides, alternative testing methods, and screening-level risk assessments. Dr. Rattner actively represents the DOI as a member of the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods, and serves as a special consultant to the Fish and Wildlife Service on issues related to nontoxic shot used in hunting.


  • B.S., University of Maryland, 1972 - Zoology 
  • M.S., University of Maryland, 1974 - Zoology, Developmental Biology 
  • Ph.D., University of Maryland, 1977 - Zoology, Environmental Physiology
  • National Research Council Postdoctoral Associateship, Naval Medical Research Institute, 1978 - Hyperbaric Physiology


  • Adjunct Full Professor, Department of Environmental Science and Technology, University of Maryland

Areas of Expertise/Interest: Wildlife Toxicology; Risk Assessment; Physiology

Active Projects: 

  • Development of data and models to evaluate the hazard and risk of anticoagulant rodenticides to non-target raptorial species
  • Absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination and toxicity of neonicotinoids in seed-eating birds
  • Harmful algal blooms and bird die-offs in the Chesapeake Bay: A potential link?
  • Contaminant exposure and potential reproductive effects in ospreys nesting in Chesapeake and Delaware Bay
  • Contaminant-related activities and synoptic reviews in support of client agencies in the Department of the Interior
  • Technical assistance to the Fish and Wildlife Service on alternative shot

Accomplishments, Awards, and Achievements:

  • Authored over 135 publications, co-edited three books (Handbook of Ecotoxicology, Ecotoxicology of Wild Mammals,Anticoagulant Rodenticides and Wildlife), and made over 160 presentations at scientific meetings, workshops and symposia.
  • Compiled two widely used internet-accessible ecotoxicological databases (Contaminant Exposure and Effects—Terrestrial Vertebrates database, Biological and Ecotoxicological Characteristics of Terrestrial Vertebrate Species Residing in Estuaries).
  • Serves as Terrestrial Editor of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, and as an Editorial Board member of the Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, and Outlooks on Pest Management.
  • SETAC Government Service Award 2007
  • President, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry - North America 2012
  • President, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry World Council 2015
  • Fellow, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 2017
  • Distinguished Service Award, Department of the Interior 2018