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Barnett Rattner, Ph.D.

Dr. Barnett Rattner is an ecotoxicologist at the Eastern Ecological Science Center in Laurel, MD.

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 hunt nontoxic shot used in hunt waterfowl.

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


  • Authored over 150 publications, co-edited three books (Handbook of Ecotoxicology, Ecotoxicology of Wild Mammals, Anticoagulant Rodenticides and Wildlife), and made over 175 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.

*Disclaimer: Listing outside positions with professional scientific organizations on this Staff Profile are for informational purposes only and do not constitute an endorsement of those professional scientific organizations or their activities by the USGS, Department of the Interior, or U.S. Government