Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center

Pest Management Transition Project

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EPA Decision to Phase-out AZM
Pest Management Transition Project
PMTP Implementation Units
Sprayer Calibration
WSU Decision Aid System
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EPA Decision to Phase-out AZM

Washington apple growers have based control of the key pest, the codling moth (CM), on azinphos-methyl (AZM, Guthion). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the phase-out of AZM by 2012. This regulatory action marks a new era for the apple industry, which must control CM while transitioning from AZM to new IPM-based strategies. The EPA classifies many recently registeredinsecticides as reduced risk and OP alternatives. While these alternatives are safer, they are, in many cases, more costly, less efficacious, and used with different timing and application requirements than the OPs they replace. Transitioning from

Most OP use in apple targets the key key pest, codling most (above).

OPs will likely result in an initial increase in apple pest control costs and require significantly more sophisticated management. Fortunately, existing research-based knowledge is available to help with the transition of IPM programs.


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Pest Management Transition Project

Recognizing an opportunity to move proactively and transition to new technologies that would not only meet but surpass EPA regulations, apple industry leadership sought and received funding through the State Legislature for the Pest Management Transition Project (PMTP). The objectives of the PMTP are:

  1. to enhance understanding of new IPM technologies through educational programs and communication of research-based knowledge;
  2. to increase adoption of new IPM technologies through sharing information on successes and failures; and
  3. to document changes in practices, attitudes, and perceptions of growers, farm workers, and stakeholders.

The PMTP will be interacting with growers, managers, and crop consultants through Implementation Units, which are localized groups that will share information about successes and failures as new technologies are implemented into pest management programs. Implementation Unit meetings are being held now and will continue at regular intervals through the growing season. Sign-up now to participate in this exciting opportunity to be on the cutting edge of orchard pest management.

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Implementation Units

The PMTP is currently working to establish Implementation Units (IUs) across the state of Washington. The purpose of the IUs is to share research based knowledge about new IPM technologies and to create opportunities for growers, managers, researchers, and crop consultants to share experiences about successes and failures as these new technol-

ogies are implemented into pest management programs. Each IU participant will receive a PMTP IU Handbook, which will highlight some of the IPM strategies that will help with the transition from azinphos-methyl to new technol- ogies. Visit the events calendar online to find meetings that will be held in your area.



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Sprayer Calibration

New insecticides for codling moth control must either come into direct contact with the egg or be consumed by the larva to provide effective control. These charac- teristics make sprayer coverage more important than ever before. Taking the time now to ensure that your sprayer is properly calibrated will save time and money in the future. Proper calibration of an airblast sprayer requires that tractor speed, water

volume, and nozzle manifold arrangement be coordin- ated to achieve the best coverage under site-specific operating conditions. Driving too fast is the most common error made in airblast sprayer calibration. Tractor speed must correspond with the sprayer output to ensure that proper air displacement occurs in the tree canopy. For most airblast spray- ers this means driving at speeds from 1.5 to 2.5 miles per hour.


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WSU Decision Aid System

The Decision Aid System (DAS) can be found at: DAS is a web-based application that integrates weather data, insect and disease models, management recommend- ations, and pesticide spray guide. DAS is powered by data from WSU-AgWeather Net and predicted weather from NOAA.

DAS provides one stop shopping for Time-Sensitive IPM Information.

Beginning in 2008, it will not be necessary for users to set a biofix date to use DAS. Biofix will auto- matically be predicted using accumulated degree days starting January 1. Historically, setting biofix has been one of the greatest sources of error in using the codling moth degree day model. The automatic biofix setting will greatly reduce this error and make prediction of critical biological events more accurate.



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