Author Archives: janet.hurley

SPN: Updated Green List publication, Summer Bugs that make you Itch

Recognizing Green Category Products By Janet Hurley Introducing our “Recognizing Green Category Products” handout as a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension numbered publication. Forever known as the ‘green list’ this document has morphed over the past fifteen years to help us (Don Renchie, Mike Merchant and Janet Hurley) to train Texas School IPM coordinators about our three colored category pesticide ranking system. When the ranking was first developed in the mid-1990’s organophosphates were being phased out, pyrethroids were coming on, but also a variety of other insecticides were being… Read More →






SPN: Understanding the pest control contract

Do you find your IPM program lacking? Frustrated that you are getting the services you think you are paying for? Then it’s time to look at pest control bid specifications and make some adjustments. When it comes to pest control program there are three basic goals. First, the program needs to be as safe as possible. The program reduces the risk from both pesticides and pests. Second, the program should be effective in eliminating pests as a potential health threat. Finally, the program should be affordable. The program… Read More →






SPN: Bed bugs happen: Even in school

Written by: Dr. Mike Merchant, Professor and Urban Entomologist A message to all parents with kids in school:  Bed bugs happen. Bed bugs happen even in your children’s school, and like it or not we’re all going to have to deal with it. That will mean fighting the inclination to go into hyper-protective parent mode. Instead we all need to relax.  Deep breaths.  Eyes closed. Find your center.  Breeeathe… it will be all right. It doesn’t matter what kind of school our kids attend, there’s a good chance that sooner or later… Read More →






SPN: Fleas and Ticks

By: Dr. Mike Merchant, Professor and Urban Entomologist Fleas and ticks are not the kind of pests one normally expects to find in schools, but then what’s normal about school IPM?  Several recent calls to our office have concerned flea and tick problems, some of which are apparently being brought from home, and some which may be originating on school grounds.  So let’s learn some basics about these two pest types. Fleas are insect pests of warm blooded animals.  About 95% of flea species specialize in feeding on… Read More →






SPN: Fire Ant Control: The Two-Step Method and Other Approaches

By: Dr. Paul Nester, Extension Program Specialist – IPM, Houston/Metro area When it comes to insect pests, fire ants would probably top everyone’s list! Red and black imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta and Solenopsis richteri) are invasive species and their painful bites can injure or kill livestock, wildlife, domestic animals, and humans. Their large mounds (as many as 300 per acre) are unsightly and often damage mowers and other equipment. Fire ants also infest buildings and can damage electrical equipment by chewing on wire insulation. Fire ants cost… Read More →






KEEP YOUR SCHOOL GARDEN PROGRAMS GREEN!

Funding School Garden Programs for long term success. By Jeffery Raska, Program Assistant, 4-H Youth Development, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension – Dallas County Many times, I am asked by school groups at the initial planning meeting, “Can I do this or can we build that’’ and my answer is always the same, sure we can ‘’ it only takes money and knowhow!!” I am amazed that some of the best initially funded schools obtain funding to start a garden, but do not have an ongoing budget planned to… Read More →






SPN: Bat Management – What everyone should know.

Bats, which consume huge quantities of insects, including many that damage crops, are important to our local economies and Texans protect them as valuable allies. However, bats sometimes create a nuisance when they roost in buildings in large numbers. Why do bats roost in buildings anyway? Are they dangerous? Moreover, what is the best way to handle bat nuisance problems? There are approximately 1,100 bat species in the world. Texas is home to 33 species, with 10 species that most are familiar with. “Texas has one of the… Read More →






SPN: Rodenticides How do they fit into your IPM program?

By Janet Hurley, Extension Program Specialist III Rodent control is a multi-layer process and baiting for rats is just one part of the IPM process. However, using rodent baits is a question most School IPM Coordinators have concern over since they do work around children, food handling areas and non-target animal populations. The information below is some general information on rodenticides for use with the house mouse, roof rat, and Norway rats. So what’s the difference between a rodenticide and rodent bait? A rodenticide is a pesticide or… Read More →






Getting a school garden blooming (The Garden Committee)

By:   Jeff Raska, Program Assistant, 4-H Youth Development,  Texas A&M AgriLife Extension  Dallas County Texas                jwraska@ag.tamu.edu A school vegetable garden can be a wonderful outdoor classroom for studying natural science or just hanging out writing a story. Having worked on and off with school gardens for 25 years I have seen many great school garden programs bloom and fade as time passes and school priorities change. For the last 7 years, I have had the privilege of working with school gardens as a 4-H Program Assistant for Dallas… Read More →






Why people resort to the silver bullet: using psychology to teach IPM

Written By: Rosemary Hallberg, Communication Director, Southern IPM Center I’ve had many discussions with my colleagues about the best way to sell integrated pest management, or IPM, to the public. Although I don’t usually work with people directly on their pest management practices, I have heard some of our IPM Coordinators say, and have read in several news articles, that IPM is easier to sell to some people than to others. Why is that? Why is the organic community so successful at selling organic goods to the general… Read More →