DriftWatch Identifies Nearby Pesticide-Sensitive Crops
March 13, 2013
DriftWatch shows locations of pesticide-sensitive plantings and the type of planting using county or township maps or satellite images.
The Nebraska Department of Agriculture and University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Pesticide Safety Education Program are encouraging all outdoor pesticide applicators to take advantage of the features in DriftWatch this season. This online mapping service shows the locations of commercial pesticide-sensitive crops, including grapes, fruits, vegetables, orchards, nurseries, and organic crops. Applicators benefiting from this service would be those with who apply pesticide to their own farm, fields, and fence lines, and commercial applicators in the ag plant, right of way, and ornamental/turf categories.
An easy to use GoogleTM map allows applicators to search their application area so they can take precautions around known commercial sensitive crops. Applicators are also encouraged to open a dialogue with these growers—many have consented to have their contact information provided in the crop information that pops up when a specific location is clicked. In addition, DriftWatch offers an email applicator notification system when new crop locations are entered into a “business area” selected by the applicator.
Go to the “applicators” section to sign up for this service and see additional resources for applicators, including information from various states on pesticide sensitive crops and pesticide management. A new University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension NebGuide, Protecting Pesticide Sensitive Crops (G2179), provides a very good overview of the issue and reasons for concern. Applicators who work in more than one state are encouraged to check the main DriftWatch page for other states in DriftWatch or who use similar state-based directories.
Environmental Programs Specialist
Extension Pesticide Safety Educator