Read the ENTIRE label when applying a pesticide

The EPA notified OPMP this morning regarding a large bumble bee kill in Oregon involving a landscaper using a pesticide to control aphids in linden trees at a Target parking lot.  EPA has been notified that as of last night (8pm ET), the State of Oregon has issued a 180-day “don’t use” moratorium on the product.  The investigation is ongoing. The label on the pesticide used indicated that the product should not be applied during the day on trees in full bloom, specifically because of its effects on pollinators.

With agricultural production in full swing all across the country, OPMP requests your assistance through outreach and education to remind all users of pesticides of the importance of following the label.  This helps to ensure good pest management while protecting wildlife, their habitat, and the environment.  It is especially important that urban gardeners and homeowners, who may not be as familiar with the content of the label, have access to this important information.  We are requesting your assistance in communicating this information to your communities.

Before you apply any pesticide, be sure to read the label on the product. Use of any pesticide in any way that is not consistent with label directions and precautions is illegal. It may also be ineffective and dangerous. The basic steps in reducing pesticide risks are:

  • Choose the form of pesticide best suited to your target site and the pest you want to control:
    • First, identify the problem correctly and then, choose the least-toxic pesticide that will achieve the results you want and be the least toxic to you and the environment.
    • When the words “broad-spectrum” appear on the label, this means the product is effective against a broad range of pests. If the label says “selective,” the product is effective against one or a few pests.
    • Read the label before buying the pesticide, read the label before mixing or using the pesticide each time, and read the label before storing or disposing of the pesticide.
  • Determining the right amount to purchase and use: do not assume that using more pesticide than the label recommends will do a better job. It won’t.
  • Pay particular attention to any WARNINGS on the label. If the label specifically indicates that the product should not be applied during a certain time of day, or on plants in bloom, please be sure to follow the warning. These warnings are there to protect wildlife and the user.
  • Find the signal word—either Danger, Warning, or Caution on the pesticide label. The signal word tells you how poisonous the product is to humans.
  • Choose the form of pesticide (aerosol, dust, bait, or other) best suited to your target site and the pest you want to control. Certain formulations work better for some pests and/or some target areas than others
  • Using the product safely and correctly:
    • Never apply pesticides outdoors on a windy day (winds higher than 10 mph)
    • Wear protective clothing, don’t smoke or eat
    • Mix and apply only the amount you need
    • Watch for negative effects on wildlife (birds, butterflies, and bees) in and near treated areas. If you see any unusual behavior, stop using that pesticide, and contact EPA’s Pesticide Incident Response Officer
  • Store and dispose of pesticides properly.
    • Follow all storage instructions on the pesticide label.
    • Always store pesticides in their original containers, complete with labels that list ingredients, directions for use, and first aid steps in case of accidental poisoning.

State and local laws regarding pesticide disposal may be stricter than the federal requirements on the label. Be sure to check with your state or local solid waste agency before disposing of your pesticide containers.

One Response

  1. i agree with the article. there are many issue now wit commercial pesticides that is many people prefer organic pest control Brisbane for health reasons.

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