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  1. 1. What Happens to the Pesticides We apply? Commercial Pesticide Applicator Exam Preparation Class Laura Pottorff, Colorado State Unversity, Adams County
  2. 2. EPA “has the responsibility to ensure that the use of pesticides will not cause unreasonable adverse effects to human health and the environment.” EPA Pesticide Registration Notice 2001-X
  3. 3. “applicators must not allow pesticide spray or dusts to drift from the application site and contact people, animals” EPA Pesticide Registration Notice 2001-X
  4. 4. Environmental hazards of pesticides Damage to biological controls Damage to pollinating insects Damage to wildlife/endangered species death of plants and animals habitat contamination elimination of food sources Phytotoxicity inadvertent damage to the plant.
  5. 5. Environmental hazards of pesticides Can contaminate water Surface water Groundwater
  6. 6. Ideal Pesticide applied reaches target pest. Doesn’t go beyond target area.
  7. 7. What happens to the Pesticides we apply? On way to target Physical Drift Physical movement of pesticide droplets or particles through the air at the time of pesticide application or soon thereafter—to any non- or off-target site.
  8. 8. Spray Drift is undesirable! Inefficient use of equipment and time Under-application/ineffective control Litigation concerns Unintentional contamination of foodstuffs Air/water pollution Animal and human health/safety
  9. 9. Factor that affect drift Controllable and uncontrollable factors Factors that contribute to drift are unique to each application and depend on weather, the application site, application equipment, and applicator behavior.
  10. 10. Studies have show that the equipment and its operation are responsible for 68 – 90% of the physical drift problems while weather accounts for 10 – 32% D. B. Smith, 1982
  11. 11. Physical Drift Drift from ground sprayers is estimated to be 5% of applied spray Distance drift falls 30 feet - ½ of the spray hits the ground 300 feet – 1/10,000 Aerial sprayers can create 5 – 10 times the amount of drift.
  12. 12. Physical Drift Droplet size < 100 micron Measured in microns diameter – can drift 1 micron=1/25,000 of Increasing droplet an inch size reduces drift Hair – 50 microns Change nozzle type Use shields Reduce pressure
  13. 13. What happens to the Pesticides we apply? On the way to the target Evaporates = volatilization (VAPOR DRIFT) conversion of a liquid or solid into a gas volatilization is a common problem with pesticides like lawn weed sprays. The hazard potential increases with high temperatures, low relative humidity and wind.
  14. 14. Understanding the chemical The larger the chemicals molecular weight (the bigger it is), the higher it’s boiling point. An increased boiling point of a compound means a decrease in its ability to volatilize or to become a vapor.
  15. 15. What happens to the Pesticides we apply? On way to target Photodecomposition Breakdown of chemical by sunlight Reach plants Reach soil Reach water
  16. 16. What happens to the Pesticides we apply? Reach plants Absorption by plant leaves Absorption by plant roots Absorption by thatch Washed off by rain or irrigation
  17. 17. What happens to the Pesticides we apply? Reach soil Adsorption (chemically bound to soil particles) Bound to soil and OM Chemical degradation in soil Inactivation/breakdown by soil microbes/animals Leached through soil profile
  18. 18. What happens to the pesticides we apply? Reach water Surface runoff Runoff (movement with surface water flow) Runoff water is a potential hazard on slopes where it can take water soluble pesticides and soil particles (with pesticides bound to it). Leach through soil profile Leaching hazard is a factor of soil type, precipitation, irrigation and the product’s solubility and soil adsorption properties.
  19. 19. Potential water quality problems High water table Permeable soils Well heads (water seepage around casing or down wells) Repeated use (or large dosage or water soluble, low adsorption pesticides or fertilizers) Large spills (of water soluble, low adsorption pesticides or fertilizers)
  20. 20. Environmental Protection What Can We Do?
  21. 21. Environmental Protection Step # 1 ID pest correctly Step #2 Use IPM/PHC Step #3 Choose the appropriate pesticide
  22. 22. Environmental protection PHC managers must consider environmental awareness as an important aspect of the job. It is the applicator’s obligation to become familiar with how pesticides move off target.
  23. 23. Environmental Protection What Can You Do? We have control over: What we apply When we apply it How we apply it How we store it How we dispose of it
  24. 24. Environmental Protection To reduce unwanted pesticide movement in the environment, chemical and physical properties of the pesticides should be understood. These are listed on the MSDS and Label molecular weight, boiling point, solubility in water
  25. 25. Preventing Drift A variety of nozzles are available Select the proper nozzle type and size
  26. 26. Nozzles Modified flat fan better drop size control over wider variation of pressures
  27. 27. Reducing Drift The use of adjuvants/thickeners reduces drift 50 – 75% reduction in the first 30 feet Increase droplet size of pesticide/water mix $0.10 - $1.00/acre
  28. 28. Don’t Drift Think about the area surrounding each site Select pesticides that meet your needs and pose little risk to the environment Follow label restrictions Note prevailing wind Be considerate of neighbors Respond courteously to complaints Spray smart and make a clean application
  29. 29. Preventing Drift Select a nozzle that produces a coarse droplet Use the lower end of the nozle’s pressure range Lower boom height Increase spray volume by selecting larger spray tips
  30. 30. How to minimize leaching or runoff Consider application area lakes, rivers, ponds, wells, etc are high risk slopes or bare soil are high risk Consider soil type sandy soils prone to leaching clay soils bind more than loam, but runoff potential is greater
  31. 31. How to minimize leaching and runoff Consider weather avoid applications immediately before rain or irrigation Consider solubility of pesticide the more water soluble (listed on MSDS) the more likely it is to leach.
  33. 33. Summary 1. Consider vulnerability of the local environment. Plant, animal life, geology, soil type, temperature, wind and weather forecast.
  34. 34. Summary 2. Consider location of water sources. Surface waters What is depth of ground water Location and depth of wells Never mix, store, or dispose of pesticides with in 100 feet of a well.
  35. 35. Summary 3. Use buffer zones around sensitive areas. Leave borders of untreated plants Sensitive areas = springs, wells, wetlands, ground water recharge or sensitive plants
  36. 36. Summary 4. Consider the weather and irrigation. If rain is forecast, delay application Control irrigation after application to minimize leaching and runoff.
  37. 37. Summary 5. Select pesticides carefully is one needed? consult the label and MSDS THE TARGET SITE HAS TO BE ON THE LABEL, THE PEST DOES NOT
  38. 38. Summary 6. Choose proper application tools. Nozzles - dictates droplet size Make sure equipment is in good working order
  39. 39. Summary 7. Calibrate accurately 8. Measure accurately mix only what is needed and use what is mixed 9. Mix and load carefully avoid spills
  40. 40. Summary 10. Always carry spill control materials 11. Practice IPM 12. Keep records 13. Store, transport and dispose of pesticides properly triple rinse
  41. 41. Record Keeping-Summary WHY? Required by law Provide accurate historical records Provide means of mapping important pest problems/areas
  42. 42. Record Keeping What should be recorded? 1. Name of material applied. Trade name formulation active ingredient (common name) EPA registration # (satisfies legal reporting requirements)
  43. 43. What should be recorded? 2. Date and time of application time of day, particularly if this varies from the usual application time. 3. Area treated record in either sq ft or acres
  44. 44. What should be recorded? 4. Total amount of material applied. Include the intended of measured rate of active ingredient as well as the total amount of material applied to the area. It is also useful to record the rates of water in which the pesticide was applied. (e.g. gallons/1000 sq ft)
  45. 45. What should be recorded? 5. Tank storage time and pH. It is best to apply pesticides immediately after mixing. Monitor pH if your water sources are different.
  46. 46. What should be recorded? 6. The amount of post application irrigation. Gallons of water/unit area The target pest indicate who did diagnosis, location of sampling and whether diagnosis was made prior to pesticide application or after.
  47. 47. What should be recorded? 9. Weather conditions conditions prior to the appearance of symptoms or damage and conditions at time of application 10. Apparent results of application. Important!! Were results due to application or change in weather, etc???
  48. 48. Storage of pesticides-Summary Commercial In ground level room designed for pesticide storage. Fenced and locked when not in use Security issues (especially since 9/11/01) Lock up your application equipment Dry Cool/not allowed to freeze Signage stating pesticide storage “WARNING: HAZARDOUS MATERIALS (PESTICIDES) ARE CONTAINED WITHIN” OR compliance with local fire authorities
  49. 49. Storage of pesticides-Summary Must have an accurate inventory List EPA# Date of purchase Location within storage facility Store inventory list separate from storage area
  50. 50. Storage of pesticides Everyone in original, labeled containers keep tightly sealed never store on shelves higher than eye level to prevent serious accidents check containers on regular basis do not allow dry formulations to get wet or liquid products to freeze
  51. 51. Disposal of pesticides-Summary Use as labeled or intended! Do NOT dump down the drain or sewer Watch for “household chemical roundups” or “ChemSweeps” Empty containers must be triple rinsed.