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Brandon W. Boughen: Keep the pests out and stay profitable

Denton County has approximately 62,000 acres in grazing and hay production and more than 48,000 acres under cultivation with small grains. Insect pest management and weed control are important tools in keeping these agricultural acres at a profitable level.

Good pest control practices relate to higher grain yields and quality forage harvested either by baling or grazing livestock. In order to maintain the production goals set by the agricultural producer, herbicide and insecticide chemical applications are sometimes warranted.

When applying restricted and state limited-use chemicals, the Texas Department of Agriculture requires a current pesticide applicator license. The term pesticide applicator training is referred collectively to the education components of certification and recertification of the pesticide applicator license.

In Texas, this involves maintaining continuing education units in the areas of state and county laws and regulations, personal safety, integrated pest management. These and other requirements are a condition for a producer to have their licenses renewed.

In order to meet the educational needs of these producers and the requirements of the state, the Denton County Extension Agriculture Committee will conduct a Pesticide Applicator Recertification Course on Dec. 6.

The course will be held at Global Spheres Center, 7801 S. Interstate 35E in Corinth. Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the training will start at 9 a.m. and conclude at 3 p.m.

Pesticide applicators will receive five continuing education units for attending including, laws and regulations as well as integrated pest management. Topics to be covered will include livestock entomology, pesticide laws and regulations, weed control in grain sorghum and corn, insect pest control in small grains and forage and feral hog control.

Even if you do not have a pesticide applicator license, this is a great educational opportunity with presentations by professionals and researchers who are at the top of their field.

Lunch and refreshments will be provided. Pre-registration is required with a fee of $45 (made payable to Ag Demo Fund) and mailed to the Denton County Extension Office located at 401 W. Hickory, Suite 112, Denton, TX 76201 by Wednesday.

To register, or for more information, contact the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office at 940-349-2880, e-mail or check out the agriculture section of our website at

BRANDON W. BOUGHEN, MAg, is the Denton County extension agent with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. He can be reached at 940-349-2894 or by e-mail at