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USDA Plant Pest Permits:
An Introduction to ePermits
and the 526 permit
Prepared for the Association For
October 1-4, 2012
Wayne Wehling, PhD
Senior Entomologist, USDA/APHIS
Plant Protection and Quarantine
Pest Permit Branch, Unit 133
4700 River Road, Riverdale, MD 20737
Day 1: Getting set up with an ePermits Account and
understanding the butterfly release matrix
Day 2: How to fill out and submit applications
Day 3: Short cuts and how to manage your permits
Day 4: Follow up on all question
Welcome to day two of the butterfly permitting short course.
Today we will logon to your ePermits account and prepare a
permit application. I realize that if you started down the road
to setting up eAuthentication yesterday that you might not
have everything ready to go today! In that case, you will need
to set aside today’s lesson plan until you have the
eAuthentication account set up. Once you are set up you can
return to this lesson.
eAuthentication and ePermits are separate software packages
but the two work seamlessly together. When you login to your
eAuthentication account you will be taken directly to your
ePermits account. For today I will make the assumption that
you have worked through Level 1 and Level 2 eAuthenitication
and you have responded to the emails confirming account setup.
Much of the lesson plan will be showing screen shots from
eAuthentication , ePermit, and APHIS web pages. Like yesterday
I will use yellow arrows and yellow boxes outlined in red placed
on these screen shots to point out or make comments on
important details. All of the arrows and boxes are placed by me
and are not present on the screen view. I hope I don’t block any
Special comments found here
You will remember there is a standard format for the appearance
for all USDA, APHIS, and ePermit web pages. Choices are available in
shadowed blue or grey boxes down the left and right sides of the
screen. Your personal ePermits account will also have this same
structure and appearance.
Select “Permits” and you
can logon from the next
ePermits will timeout if you take to
long between entries. When that
happens you will get this screen
and need to logon again to
continue. Any work you have
done since the last time you
clicked continue or save will be
lost. The Continue button will
appear in other screens.
The User ID and
need are the
ones set up when
None of these choices are of any use if
you have set up your eAuthentication
Use your User ID and Password from
creating your level 1 account to login
This is the first screen you will see after logging in. We
call it the “Home” screen. Everything starts from here.
You can also logoff from the bottom of the left
All of your permits and
applications are summarized on
the Home screen. Clicking on
them will open the item
Scroll to the bottom of any screen after you have left
the Home screen and you will see several hot links
including Home. On other screens, as we move
through submitting an application, you will be able to
move around in ePermits based on these hot links.
From the Home screen we can
manage our ePermit account
and review any applications
that have been prepared or
submitted, any issued permits
or expired permits, permit
This is also where we start to
prepare a new application.
Go ahead and select “Create
button (in some
selections from the
Home page will
appear on all of the
From this screen select
“Plant Protection &
Quarantine” and click on
From this screen
select PPQ 526 Permit
and click Continue
From this screen click No
and click Continue. You are
not applying for a permit for
dangerous biological agents.
Now we are ready to prepare an
application. The basic name,
address, phone, etc. should be
prepopulated. This can be
edited in you’re My Profile
selection on the Home page. I
have blocked out the actual
This is the first screen where
we see the red rope with the
buttons on it across the top.
This will appear in all remaining
screens. You can click on the
button where you want to be
and move around while filling
out your application. Where
you are among the 7 buttons
will be highlighted in blue
along the red rope.
Scrolling down on the Applicant
screen shows many blanks with a red
asterisk next to it. Information is
required for all of these. An error
message will occur if any are left
blank. When completed you must
click Continue to navigate from this
page. Continue should appear at the
top and bottom of each screen with a
few exceptions. Clicking Continue
saves your work.
Articles is the second button.
Notice the button is highlighted in
blue. Under Articles we will begin
to create the list of all of the
butterflies that we want on our
permit. At this point the Articles
Summary is empty
Enter New Articles is where we
want to go next. The butterflies
we want are regulated Articles
From the pull-down boxes marked we need
to select where the butterflies will come from
and what they will be used for. Then we can
scroll down this page to select the butterflies.
Remember when there is a red asterisk, there
must be a response, which also means if
there is no asterisk a response is not required.
The pull down
screen shows the
choices for where
come from. Be
sure to choose the
one shown here.
Any other could
result in a permit
denial, phone call,
and possible delay.
The second pull
shows the choices
for what is to be
done with the
Choose the one
shown here, any
other could result
in a permit denial,
phone call, and
down the same
choose the list
where we will
Pests – Insects
from the long
list of choices
If we click on any
name on the list and
then type the first
letter of the scientific
name of the butterfly
we want, the list will
jump to that letter in
the alphabet. Then
use the arrow keys or
scroll bar to move up
or down in the list.
Click on any name in the
list. In this case, I have
gigas. Then type the first
letter of the scientific name
of the butterfly we want.
The list will jump to that
letter. Then we can scroll to
find the species. Try typing
“D”, then scroll down to
Here I have clicked on Danaus
plexippus. When I clicked on the arrow
between the boxes I transfer Danaus
plexippus onto the list of species on the
right that I want on the application.
Danaus plexippus has already been
moved across in this screen image.
Three species are now on my list and I
have highlighted two more to move
across. The shift and control keys can be
used to highlight multiple species and
move across at one time. Keep in mind,
butterfly release permits will only be
issued for those allowed from the chart
demonstrated in lesson one.
When you have all the species you are
seeking moved across click on continue
in the bottom right. Note the Delete
option to check off and remove species if
you have made a mistake. For this
demonstration I will leave only the three
species above on the application.
This screen is part of the
Articles button as we can
see from the blue highlight.
There are 4 decisions with
asterisks on this screen. The
only life stages allowed for a
full release permit are pupae
All of the butterflies allowed
for release are established in
the US so put Yes
For Major Host put Various
Accompanying Material put
none then click Continue
This 3rd screen under the Articles button for
Enter Culture Designation does not apply to
butterfly release applications. Don’t do
anything here and click continue
This 4th screen under the Articles button is only a summary. If we
wanted to go back and make any changes or check anything we could
start that from here. This is the first time that we see the Edit, Copy
and Delete icons which can be very useful and I hope are self
explanatory. Nothing is required here so click Done Entering Articles
We have moved to the Origination Point button. From here we are
deciding from the one pull down screen whether this will be an
Interstate Movement, Intrastate Movement, Import, or Continued
Interstate Movement is the only type of movement that we will
consider for a permit to release butterflies into the environment.
Making a different choice here will take the process in different
directions and could result in a permit denial. Also, don’t fill in the
Approximate Date(s) of Initial Import or Movement block unless this
is for a single event. Choose Interstate Movement and click Continue.
This is the 2nd screen under Origination Points. We are going to assign
a source location for the butterflies on the application. The only
choice that is useful for a butterfly release permit is Multiple States.
Click on Multiple States to go to the next screen.
This is the top half of the 3nd screen under Origination Points. Here we
are going to assign a source location state for where the butterflies will
come from and select all of the butterflies on the application that it
applies to. I have chosen Maryland and Check All. You should choose
your home state .
The bottom portion of
the 3nd screen under
Origination Points has
nothing that we need
to fill in (no red
asterisks). When you
have responded to the
2 required areas near
the top of this screen
This screen is a summary of the Origination Points button. We can
make changes here using the various icons or we can click Done
Entering Origination Points and move on. This screen tells me I
want to move the 3 butterflies listed and from Maryland.
This screen is the top half
of the Destination button.
Because we are applying
for a permit to release
butterflies only 3 blocks
need to be completed.
There are 3 red astericks.
You need to say Yes to
release and pick a
destination state in 2
locations (see next screen
for second location).
This screen is the bottom half of the Destination button. There is one
more place you need to put the destination state from the pull down
list. This screen shot also shows the red error message you get if you
leave it blank. Nothing else needs to be filled out, so click Continue.
This screen is asking for information on how you plan to keep the
butterflies from escaping. It does not apply to a butterfly release
application and you can click on Done Entering Proposed Measures.
This screen is asking for any supplemental information you want to
attach in support of this application. This does not apply to an
application for butterfly release. It is useful for butterfly exhibits and
would allow you to attach electronic files in support of the application.
Click Continue without any input.
This is the final
screen and the 7th
button on the rope.
It is your last
chance to go back
and make any
changes. At this
point any of the
buttons can be
revisited and the
When Certify and
Submit is clicked it
is submitted and
cannot be revise by
the applicant .
This screen verifies that your application has been submitted and
provides you with an application number. You can print the application
for your records or return to the Home screen.
Please feel free to contact me anytime for help with ePermits,
email works best. Please note that help is available via the
web pages for eAuthentication and ePermits.
information specialist in our office can help with ePermit
questions. 301-851-2046 Scott Kravetz or Chris Bembenek.
Keep in mind that eAuthentication and ePermits are different
Software packages and are supported by different staffs. The
APHIS permitting staff will not be able to help you with