RAATs an international winner
Steve Brill, supervisor of the Goshen County Weed and Pest department, thanks board members and cooperators for their work that resulted in recognition for RAATs, a grasshopper control program. Integrated Pest Management, an international organization, made the award.
By SANDRA HANSEN
TORRINGTON, Wyo. – Goshen County Weed and Pest department, as well as area cooperators who participated in the program, received recognition recently for their part in an international award. Steve Brill, supervisor of the department announced the award during the spring grasshopper control meeting at Torrington in early April.
The official announcement was made during the 7th International IPM Symposium at Memphis, Tenn., in March, where Dr. Alexandre Latchininski was presented a plaque in recognition of his accomplishment.
Latchininsky, associate professor/Extension entomologist at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, created the system in 0000 , with the beginning of a grasshopper invasion.
Reduced Agent-Area Treatments (RAATs) involves surveillance-driven chemical control in a pattern on the rangeland, where untreated swaths are left alone. In the untreated swaths, insects that eat grasshoppers are preserved, providing more population control.
The IPM announcement said the Wyoming project is a “win-win strategy that reduces pesticide use by more than 50 percent. It also noted that the program is spreading across the western United States, Asia and West Africa where grasshoppers and locusts do the same kind of damage.
A RAATs brochure explains that the program reduces insecticide application to rangelands by 50-75 percent. Depending on swath width, costs can be reduced by as much as two-thirds.
RAATs is the preferred option in the USDA APHIS Environmental Impact Statement for grasshopper control.
“We’re proud to be part of the program that’s being shared all over the world,” Brill told those attending the Torrington meeting.
The RAATs development/delivery team receiving certificates also included John Hastings, Jeffrey Lockwood, Narisu Scott Schell, and Douglas Smith of the University of Wyoming; Bruce Shambaugh and Nelson Foster, USDA APHIS; and Bob Shoemaker, retired superintendent of Platte County Weed and Pest department.
Other projects receiving the International Award of Excellence were:The Soybean Rust PIPE, Purdue Improved Cowpea Storage Team, four U.S. Regional IPM Centers, “Eco Apple” orchard marketing, and Spring Independent School District —Texas, reduced pesticides program.
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