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Pesticide license requirements

Nov. 29, 2010 at 5:29 a.m.


By Sam Womble

Each year, calls come in to the extension office concerning types of pesticide licenses, requirements and renewals. Four state agencies share responsibility for pesticide applicator certification and licensing. They include the Texas Department of Agriculture, Texas Structural Pest Control Board, Texas Department of Health and Texas AgriLife Extension Service. Texas law states a person may not use a restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticide or regulated herbicide unless licensed or certified by TDA.

And a licensed applicator is required to obtain continuing education units or CEUs. CEU credits are available from a variety of sources. Most common are through participation in Extension-sponsored educational events or through online modules. Applicators are issued completion certificates that are used to maintain proof of CEU credits.

Licensed applicators are divided into three categories: private, commercial and noncommercial. A private applicator is defined as a person who uses or supervises the use of restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticides for the purpose of producing an agricultural commodity on property owned or rented by the person or the person's employer or under the person's general control or on the property of another person if applied without compensation other than the trading of personal services between producers of agricultural commodities. Private applicator licenses are valid for five years. During that time, the applicator must obtain 15 CEUs with two hours in laws and regulations and two hours in integrated pest management.

A commercial applicator is defined as a person who operates a business or is employed by a business that applies restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticides to the property of another person for hire or compensation. Licenses are renewed annually, and applicators are responsible for obtaining five CEUs. Applicators must have one credit each from two of the following categories: laws and regulations, integrated pest management or drift minimization.

A noncommercial applicator is generally a government employee who applies restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticides in the course of their employment or persons employed by businesses applying such pesticides on their own property. Noncommercial applicators must renew annually and obtain five CEUs, also.

New resources on county website

When you log on to http://victoria-tx.tamu.edu, you'll find a new link entitled Educational Presentations. For those of you who attended the Cattlemen's College on Thursday of the South Texas Farm and Ranch Show (Karnes/Wilson County Forage Work), presentations are posted online with video voice over. Check back often as new presentations will be added.

Veterinary ranch seminar

One of the premier beef cattle educational programs in the county has been the annual Golden Crescent Veterinary Ranch Seminar held the last Friday in January. Sadly, because of several reasons, the event has been canceled for 2011. Plans are in place to collaborate with the Golden Crescent Veterinary Medical Association in the future to offer programs and continuing education units.

Sam Womble is a Victoria County extension agent - natural resources.

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