Extension hosting 2 private pesticide applicator sessions

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The University of Missouri Extension has scheduled two opportunities Monday for area farmers to obtain or re-certify for a five-year private pesticide applicator license.

The first training session starts at 1:30 p.m. in the Barry County Courthouse Commissioners Room, located on the first floor at 700 Main St. in Cassville. The second training session starts at 5:30 p.m. in the Cassville High School Agriculture Department. The fee is $15, and the age requirement is 18 years or older.

Each session takes about two-and-a-half to three hours to complete, said Tim Schnakenberg, agronomy specialist with MU Extension for Barry, Christian, Greene, Lawrence, Stone and Taney counties. Schnakenberg will provide the training at both sessions.

"This is for private applicators for just your general farmers who are spraying restricted use pesticides on their property or property that they rent," he said. "They must go through this training in order to buy those pesticides. What happens is certain pesticides are -- at the dealers -- restricted where cannot just walk in off the street and buy them. You have to show evidence that you've been trained once every five years."

The state of Missouri does not require a test when obtaining a private applicator license, Schnakenberg said.

"If a neighbor was hiring you to go spray, then you will have to get a commercial license," he said. "Then, there are tests and there are bigger fees and a lot more involved. And, those folks have to be re-certified every three years."

On Monday, Schnakenberg said he will provide a general overview of pests, pesticides, weeds and how to keep farmers and the environment safe while around pesticides.

"We just generally help farmers to develop -- if they don't already, [and most of them do] -- a healthy respect for the dangers of pesticides," he said. "It's kind of a necessary thing that we have for food production to have a way to keep pests at bay to where we can produce food and do it in a way that we get the job done without a complete loss or failure."

People who would like to attend either session should preregister with the Barry County Extension Office at 417-847-3161. The second session requires people to preregister by Friday because the ag department is providing a light meal. Cassville High School is located on Highway Y, just off Business Highway 37. The ag department is located at the rear of the school. The participants can enter through the shop door.

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