Training For Private Pesticide Applicators Available From Extension

Dec. 17, 2013

LINCOLN, Neb. — Private pesticide applicators holding licenses that expire in 2014, as well as anyone seeking first-time private applicator certification, should contact their local University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension office for information on pesticide safety education training sessions that begin in January.

Licensed private pesticide applicators can buy and use restricted-use pesticides in their own farming operations after completing this training. About 11,000 private applicators statewide are eligible for recertification in 2014.

"The main topics that applicators will learn about are Nebraska's pesticide laws and regulations, the pesticide label, personal safety, the worker protection standard, environmental protection, integrated pest management, pesticides and application, application equipment and equipment calibration," said UNL Extension pesticide safety educator Clyde Ogg.

New training topics for 2014 include pesticide drift awareness near sensitive sites like apiaries and vineyards, how to use the Driftwatch website, and control options for prairie dogs and pocket gophers.

Glyphosate resistant weeds are now appearing in Nebraska. Training will cover strategies to reduce chances of developing weed populations resistant to herbicides.

 "During pesticide training, applicators will be reminded of methods to reduce pesticide drift, to protect human health as well as sensitive crops and commodities such as grapes and bees," said Ogg. "An online tool called Driftwatch is available to help applicators determine if they will be managing land near sensitive crops."

Private applicators needing recertification in 2014 should have received a letter notifying them of that fact from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture in mid-December, Ogg said. The letter includes a bar code, which eliminates the need to complete the standard NDA application form for those wanting to recertify, he said. Applicators having the bar-coded letter with them at training sessions will not have to fill-out the application form.

"All who are eligible for recertification will be notified by their local UNL Extension office of recertification training sessions in their area," he said.

All applicators should check their licenses for the expiration date. If it expires in 2014 and they have not yet received a letter from NDA, contact them at 402-471-2351 or 877-800-4080.

UNL Extension provides the educational training for recertification, while NDA is responsible for licensing. Cost of UNL training is $30 per person.

For a list of training sessions, sites and dates, contact your nearest UNL Extension office or go online to http://pested.unl.edu/privateschedule, where applicators will find pesticide education sites for private applicators listed by county.

There is also another option for becoming certified or recertified through completion of an online course consisting of ten modules and quizzes. Pesticide applicators can purchase access to the online course via http://marketplace.unl.edu and going to the Pesticide Education section. Cost for the course is $60.

"After completing private applicator training, certification applications will be sent to NDA, who will then send a bill to the applicator for the $25 state license fee," Ogg said.

Clyde L. Ogg
Extension Educator
Pesticide Safety Education Program
Agronomy and Horticulture
402-472-1632 or 800-627-7216

Pierce J. Hansen
Extension Assistant
Pesticide Safety Education Program
Agronomy and Horticulture
402-472-1632 or 800-627-7216

Steven W. Ress
Communications Coordinator
Nebraska Water Center, part of the Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Institute
402-472-3305
sress@nebraska.edu

Dan Moser
IANR News Service
402-472-3030
dmoser3@unl.edu