The University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

Your source for pest management and pesticide news

September 2003/Volume 26, No. 9

HELP US KEEP THE PRESSES ROLLING

Please switch to e-mail delivery of the newsletter if you can

HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT

Look on the web for information that can help schools improve indoor air quality
Every fall, we receive a number of calls about yellow jackets, hornets, and other wasps

FOOD QUALITY PROTECTION ACT - REREGISTRATION

The EPA has approved drift language for azinphos-methyl products

IPM

The IPM group at the University of Connecticut (U.S.) now offers a series of tuition free, self-paced, non-credit IPM Online Home study Courses
Proceedings from the 2003 National Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Symposium Workshop are available online

FEDERAL NEWS

The EPA is looking for computer models that can help predict the risks associated with chemicals that may disrupt the human endocrine system
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) sued EPA with the contention that atrazine harms endangered species in the Chesapeake Bay

NEWS YOU CAN USE

The PCT Termite Management Summit is scheduled November 19-21, 2003
If you are looking for guides to controlling ants, beetles, or other pests in structures, the PCT online store is a good place to look

CANCELLED

The registrants of dimethoate plan to remove a number of commodities from the label
The EPA has announced the cancellation of all diazinon registrations held by Syngenta

Help Us Keep the Presses Rolling

Please switch to e-mail delivery of the newsletter if you can. Like nearly everyone else, we are feeling the budget pinch, and it is not cheap to mail out our newsletter. However, electronic delivery is practically free. There are also advantages for you.

  1. You can cut and paste the information more easily (no more scissors and glue).
  2. Unscrupulous individuals (not you) can steal useful information and pretend that they wrote it. With an electronic copy, you can simply replace my name with yours.
  3. You will not have to worry about someone stealing your copy of GPMN from your desk.
  4. Disposing of the electronic copy does not fill up your recycling box.

If you are willing to switch to an electronic copy of the newsletter, send an e-mail to tall@bugs.ent.uga.edu with the subject "Pesticide Newsletter." We will do the rest. We will not send you any junk, and no one will get your e-mail address from us.

Health and the Environment

Look on the web for information that can help schools improve indoor air quality. Pesticides are an important part of this picture. Pesticides are important tools to manage indoor pests; droppings, shed skin, and other debris from pests contribute to a variety of health problems. However, pesticides and inerts can become airborne and become part of an indoor air quality problem. This EPA web site offers advice for schools to improve indoor air quality through design innovations. http://www.epa.gov/iaq/schooldesign/

Every fall, we receive a number of calls about yellow jackets, hornets, and other wasps; here are some tips to help you control them safely. Yellow jackets, hornets, and other social wasps become a problem in the late summer and fall because the colonies have become so large. Each nest starts in the spring with a fertilized female that survived through the winter. By the end of the season, a colony may contain thousands of individuals. They protect their nest area aggressively, and they may sting around food sources.

Most people want to bring out the gasoline. Burning nests is kind of exciting, and there is an attractive revenge factor, particularly if you have been stung. Controlling insects with gasoline is also foolish and very dangerous. Every year, I read several reports of people that have burned themselves or their property while using gasoline to "burn out" a yellow jacket nest. Additionally, gasoline is a serious environmental contaminant, and it may kill your plants in the surrounding area.

Unless the wasps are threatening your family, leave them alone. Wasps are important biological controls. They patrol your yard and garden and eat caterpillars and other insects. When the weather cools down, the nest will die anyway.

If necessary, it is usually not difficult to get rid of a wasp nest.

  1. Locate the nest opening. Yellow jackets usually nest in the ground. A pair of binoculars can be useful for locating the nest from a distance.
  2. Purchase a can of wasp and hornet spray. Look for a product that will spray 20-30 feet. You can control wasps with other insecticides as well if you can get close to the nest. Sevin (carbaryl) is a common product that works well.
  3. Spray the product in and around the nest opening at dusk. If you need to use a flashlight, cover the lens with a red filter. Otherwise, you may attract angry wasps to your location.

I have also read reports of covering the opening of a yellow jacket nest with a clear bowl. The idea is that the wasps see the sky and do not realize that they could tunnel under the edge of the bowl. Yellow jacket nests usually have only one opening. I was intrigued by this idea; I was probably the only person in my neighborhood hoping for a yellow jacket nest.

Finally, I had my chance. I was stung near my car, and I jumped for joy (and pain). I located the nest opening and laid a clear glass cooking dish over the top. The next day, the yellow jackets were happily going under the edge of the glass; the uneven surface of the ground caused gaps. I sealed all of the spaces with additional soil. The yellow jackets could not escape, and they did not seem to try to dig out. The nest was completely dead in less than a week. As a scientist, I know that one replication does not prove anything, but other people have reported similar results.

Most complaints about yellow jackets are generated by the wasps' attraction to human food and drinks. Sometimes, yellow jackets make it nearly impossible to eat outside during the late summer or early fall. The yellow jackets that are annoying may be coming from outside your own yard, so eliminating local nests may not solve the problem.

Traps can help to keep yellow jackets from spoiling your outside meal. You can buy traps inexpensively, or you can make one by cutting the top from a two-liter bottle about three inches from the top. Place the cut portion upside-down on the bottle to create a funnel. Useful baits include soft drinks and meats. The yellow jackets go down into the bottle, but they usually cannot get back out.

Do not swat at yellow jackets. You may encourage them to sting. Keep your drinks covered or drink through a straw to avoid swallowing a yellow jacket. Wipe food and sticky drinks from your child's face and hands.

You can find more information about controlling household pests at our web site. http://www.ent.uga.edu/ If you do not see what you need on the home page, look under "Publications."

Food Quality Protection Act -- Reregistration

The EPA has approved drift language for azinphos-methyl products. In case you have forgotten the details, here are the crops lost and remaining for azinphos-methyl registrations.

These crops were deleted from the label: Alfalfa, Beans, Birdsfoot trefoil, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Citrus, Clover, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Filberts, Grapes, Melons, Onions, Pecans, Peppers, Plums & Dried prunes, Quince, Spinach, Strawberries, and Tomatoes.

These crops will remain on the label until 2005: Caneberries, Cotton, Cranberries, Nectarines, Peaches, Potatoes, and Southern Pine Seed orchards.

These crops will remain on the label indefinitely: Almonds, Apples & Crabapples, Blueberries, Brussels sprouts, Cherries, Nursery Stock, Parsley, Pears, Pistachios, and Walnuts.

The EPA approved the following language for azinphos-methyl. It is likely that that Agency will use this language as a template for other labels.

"Do not apply under conditions where possible drift to unprotected persons or to food, forage, or other plantings that might be damaged or the crops thereof rendered unfit for sale, use or consumption can occur.

Use the largest droplet size consistent with acceptable efficacy. Formation of very small droplets may be minimized by appropriate nozzle selection, by orienting nozzles away from the air stream as much as possible and by avoiding excessive spray boom pressure. For groundboom and aerial applications, use medium or coarser spray nozzles according to ASAE 572 definition for standard nozzles or a volume mean diameter (VMD) of 300 microns or greater for spinning atomizer nozzles.

Make aerial or ground applications when the wind velocity favors on-target product deposition. Apply only when the wind speed is less than 10 mph. For all non-aerial applications, wind speed must be measured adjacent to the application site on the upwind-side, immediately prior to application.

Do not make aerial or ground applications into areas of temperature inversions. Inversions are characterized by stable air and increasing temperatures with increasing distance above the ground. Mist or fog may indicate the presence of an inversion in humid areas. Where permissible by local regulations, the applicator may detect the presence of an inversion by producing smoke and observing a smoke layer near the ground surface.

Low humidity and high temperatures increase the evaporation rate of spray droplets and therefore the likelihood of increased spray drift. Avoid spraying during conditions of low humidity and/or high temperatures.

All aerial and ground application equipment must be properly maintained and calibrated using appropriate carriers.

For ground boom applications, apply with nozzle height no more than 4 feet above the ground or crop canopy.

For airblast applications, turn off outward pointing nozzles at row ends and when spraying the outer two rows. To minimize spray loss over the top in orchard applications, spray must be directed into the canopy.

For ground-boom, chemigation, orchard or other airblast applications, do not apply within 25 feet of permanent water bodies (rivers, natural ponds, lakes, streams, reservoirs, marshes, estuaries, or commercial fish ponds).

For aerial application to potatoes, do not apply within 150 feet of permanent water bodies (aquatic buffer zone).

For aerial application to crops other than potatoes, do not apply within 50 feet of permanent water bodies (aquatic buffer zone).

For aerial applications, release spray at the lowest height consistent with efficacy and flight safety. If the application includes an aquatic buffer zone, do not release spray at a height greater than 10 feet above the ground or crop canopy.

For aerial applications, the spray boom should be mounted on the aircraft so as to minimize drift caused by wing tip vortices. The minimum practical boom length should be used and must not exceed 75 percent of the wingspan or 90 percent of rotor blade diameter. Use upwind swath displacement."

IPM

The IPM group at the University of Connecticut (U.S.) now offers a series of tuition free, self-paced, non-credit IPM Online Home study Courses. An expanding list of topics currently ranges from the fundamental "What is IPM" to "Minimizing Pests in the Garden" and "Pest Identification-Invasive Plant Species," plus others. These internet-based titles are self-correcting, tutorial type courses (some with flash cards) offered only online. They are based on conditions in the northeastern U.S. region, but the principles and some of the pests apply to other regions as well.  http://www.hort.uconn.edu/IPM/homecourse/coursinfo.htm

Proceedings from the 2003 National Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Symposium Workshop are available online at http://cipm.ncsu.edu/symposium/  The proceedings contain presentations on a wide variety of IPM topics, including recognition and incentives, marketing IPM, new management technologies, evaluation and impact assessment, building partnerships, community IPM, education and outreach, biological control and bio-based IPM, vertebrate and wildlife IPM, strategic planning and visioning for IPM, invasive species, biotechnology, international IPM, systems approach and landscape interactions, IPM in organic systems, successes in agriculture and urban IPM, and commodity related issues.  More than 700 individuals participated in the conference, which was held in Indianapolis in April. EPA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture were among the sponsors.

If you are involved in IPM and missed the symposium, these proceedings will give you a good idea of which way the IPM wind (and money) will blow for the next five years or so.

Federal News

The EPA is looking for computer models that can help predict the risks associated with chemicals that may disrupt the human endocrine system. The body uses the endocrine system to communicate with itself (e.g., some hormones control growth or sexual development). The hormone system is similar to a lock and key system. The hormone fits into a certain receptor, and that fit causes a particular reaction. Unfortunately, some other chemicals also fit into some receptors.

Although we realize that some chemicals (including some pesticides) may cause problems, we do not know how to evaluate the risks. If we rely solely on laboratory experimentation, it could take decades to evaluate the thousands of chemicals that may interfere with the endocrine system. Additionally, there could be millions of combinations to consider.

An accurate computer model that mimics human biological systems could eliminate the need for years of research, identifying important risks much sooner and reducing the need for experimental animals. The EPA will sponsor a workshop on Computational Toxicology in Research Triangle Park, N.C., on September 29-30.  Scientists from EPA, other federal agencies, academia and research organizations will present research related to computational toxicology.  The Agency will also be awarding grants to develop an appropriate computer model. The deadline for submitting proposals for these research grants is Jan. 21, 2004.  The grants will be awarded through EPA's Science to Achieve Results program, which employs a competitive solicitation process and independent peer review.  For more information on this request for applications, see: http://cfpub.sdc-moses.com/ncer/rfa/current/2003_comptox.html  For more information about the EPA Workshop, visit http://es.epa.gov/ncer/events/

You will hear more and more about endocrine disruption. Unlike conventional poisoning, endocrine disruptors can be active at very low concentrations. The risks are believed to be particularly high for children because many of their systems are still developing. I am all for identifying these risks; we would all be repulsed if females began to resemble me.

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) sued EPA with the contention that atrazine harms endangered species in the Chesapeake Bay. The NRDC said that EPA approval of atrazine did not give adequate consideration to endangered species. The suit specifically named sea turtles in the Bay, Texas salamanders, Alabama freshwater mussels, and midwestern fish. The NRDC petitioned EPA to cancel atrazine registrations last year.

EPA has been reviewing use of atrazine, which is sprayed on crops and grass and then enters the food chain through rain, snow, and groundwater. Common and inexpensive, atrazine has been in use for more than four decades, particularly in the nation's farm belt. Its use is banned or restricted in at least eight countries, including Germany, Sweden, and South Africa. Some scientists have reported that atrazine interferes with male sexual development in some types of frogs.

EPA's review of the risks of atrazine and its decision on NRDC's petition are due to be issued this fall. (AP, 8-21-03 Thanks to Greg Storey of Bayer CropScience)

This lawsuit has tremendous implications. More than 75 million pounds of atrazine are applied annually in the U.S., mostly to corn in the Midwest. Obviously, society realizes enormous benefits from its use. However, atrazine contamination has been detected in groundwater, surface water, and rain. Millions of people are being exposed to atrazine residues. Combined with a potential for hormonal effects, atrazine has been a health concern for more than a decade. The EPA has implemented a number of actions to reduce the risks, but some groups obviously do not think the Agency has done enough. This court case could well decide the future of atrazine.

News You Can Use

The PCT Termite Management Summit is scheduled November 19-21, 2003, at the JW Marriott Hotel in Houston, Texas. The comprehensive program includes Dr. Mike Potter, Dr. Barbara Thorne, Paul Hardy, Dr. George Rambo, Jeff Tucker, and others. If you and your company are involved in termite work, you may get some valuable information at this conference. Termite management is changing rapidly, and it is important to stay informed. To register, call Michelle Fitzpatrick 800/456-0707 or http://www.pcttermitesummit.com/.

If you are looking for guides to controlling ants, beetles, or other pests in structures, the PCT online store is a good place to look. I bought books on beetles, flies, and ants at the recommendation of a colleague. We have found them to be a useful and practical resource. You can find them at http://www.pctonline.com/store/

Cancelled

The registrants of dimethoate plan to remove a number of commodities from the label. Unless the registrants and EPA change their mind, apples, grapes, cabbage, collards, spinach, head lettuce, broccoli, raab, fennel, tomatillo, lespedeza, and trefoil. These cancellations are part of regulatory activities to reduce the dietary risk of dimethoate. You may submit comment until October 10. You can find all of the information at this web site http://www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/EPA-PEST/2003/September/Day-10/p22937.htm

The EPA has announced the cancellation of all diazinon registrations held by Syngenta. Syngenta requested the cancellations some time ago, and the comment period ended recently. The EPA received only one comment, and it supported the cancellation. (EPA Pesticide Program Updates, 9-9-03)

This announcement does not mean that diazinon will be unavailable. Other companies will continue to market diazinon products for the uses that were not eliminated (e.g., home uses) by earlier regulatory actions.

The appearance of any trade name in this newsletter is not intended to endorse that product
nor convey negative implications of unmentioned products.

Dear Readers:

The Georgia Pest Management Newsletter is a monthly journal for extension agents, extension specialists, and others interested in pest management news.  It provides information on legislation, regulations, and other issues affecting pest management in Georgia.

Do not regard the information in this newsletter as pest management recommendations.  Consult the Georgia Pest Management Handbook, other extension publications, or appropriate specialists for this information.

Your input in this newsletter is encouraged.

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Or write us:

Department of Entomology
University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602

E-mail: pguillebeau@bugs.ent.uga.edu

Or visit us on the Web. You will find all the back issues there and other useful information. http://extension.caes.uga.edu/wnews.html

Sincerely:

Paul Guillebeau
Associate Professor & Extension Entomologist