Author Archives: janet.hurley

From pests to pollutants, keeping schools healthy and clean is no simple task

Parents send their children to school to learn, and they don’t want to worry about whether the air is clean, whether there are insect problems or whether the school’s cleaning supplies could cause an asthma attack. But a research collaborative, of which I’m a member, has found that schools might not be ready to protect students from environmental contaminants. I’m an extension specialist focused on pest management. I’m working with a cross-disciplinary team to improve compliance with environmental health standards, and we’ve found that schools across the nation need updates in order to meet… Read More →

SPN: Warm-Season Turfgrass Fall/Winter Preparation

For many Texans, September typically means cooler temperatures, rain showers, and the end of the long hot summer. This change of seasons has an effect on the growth of warm-season grasses like St. Augustinegrass, zoysiagrass, and bermudagrass. Three management practices to focus on this fall and winter are watering, mowing, and fertilizing. Adjusting these to match the seasonal change can create a strong healthy lawn throughout the fall and into winter dormancy. Watering As the days get shorter and temperatures become cooler, the growth rate of grass slows… Read More →

Uninvited vultures draw community ire: AgriLife provides solutions to human-vulture conflict

What can Texans do when their neighbors are unsightly, smelly and have the habit of relieving themselves wherever they like? If those neighbors happen to be one of the state’s two vulture species, they can call on the expertise of wildlife specialists with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Texas Wildlife Services. “The range and population of turkey vultures and black vultures has expanded over the past decade, leading to increased interactions with humans in both urban and rural settings,” said Mikayla Killam, AgriLife Extension wildlife program specialist with… Read More →

Statewide pest management trainings for school coordinators start in March New laws went in effect that school districts, coordinators need to be aware of

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service has announced the schedule of integrated pest management, IPM, trainings for school coordinators for 2023. AgriLife Extension offers two-day in-depth regional trainings and one-day six-hour required trainings at many regional educational service centers to assist individuals who cannot travel but want to learn about the rules from the experts. The in-person trainings will be held across the state. March 2 will be the first one-day training and March 29 will be the first two-day. Registration cost is $240 for two-day trainings or $155… Read More →

Open House November 4, 2022 to Welcome our new Entomologist

Howdy IPM Experience House and School IPM readers! It is with much please to announce that we have hired a new entomologist for the Dallas Center.  Mr. Bryant McDowell graduated with his Master of Science in Entomology in 2019 from Texas A&M University.  His thesis: Population genetics and the colony breeding structure of the invasive tawny crazy ant, Nylanderia fulva, in Texas will allow him to help Texans with identifying ants. McDowell’s role as the Extension Program Specialist for Urban IPM will be to support the IPM Experience… Read More →

SPN: Licensing, monitoring, and deep cleaning- tips for you.

Howdy Readers, Before I embark on a much-needed vacation I wanted to share a few items with you so you will have some answers while I’m away. The most common question I get is “how do I get a license”. This newsletter article has all the information you need plus a YouTube video with detailed steps. But here is the basic information: Step 1 – Contact TDA to register online – don’t send information to Austin, as it might get lost, but if you apply online they will… Read More →

SPN Spring Updates

Hello everyone, I realize that it has been a quiet late winter and early spring from the school IPM team; however, this newsletter is designed to catch you up. For those of you who are looking for school IPM coordinator training, AgriLife Extension has three two-day events coming this year. Our prices are still the same since 2007, $210 for both days, $135 for one day only. If you attend the first day you will receive a certificate that indicates, you have taken the 6-hour required course. In… Read More →

Texas bats to emerge soon: Learn more about the risks, benefits of bats.

Bats are beginning to become active in some southern parts of the state, and while cold fronts could reduce activity, it is a good time for the public to be aware of the benefits and risks associated with Texas species. Janet Hurley, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service integrated pest management specialist, Dallas, said Texas residents should expect bat activity to increase as temperatures climb. Hurley said bats are typically more prevalent in areas with agricultural fields in proximity, but cities like Houston, Austin, San Antonio, Fort Worth, Waco, Temple and… Read More →

SPN: Pesticides: Proper use key to produce food, protect human health

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, recognizes February as National Pesticide Safety Education Month. Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s Pesticide Safety Education and Extension faculty encourage the public to take the time this month to better understand the role pesticides play in our daily life and how to properly use them, since pesticides can present potential dangers when misused, mishandled, or incorrectly stored. “During National Pesticide Safety Education Month, we should reflect upon the vital role that pesticides play in protecting our health and ensuring a stable food supply while also… Read More →

Rabies Awareness & Prevention Poster Contest for K-12th Grade

Mark your calendars! The Texas DSHS Zoonosis Control Branch annual Rabies Awareness & Prevention Poster Contest is accepting submissions until April 8, 2022. Parents and teachers of children in grades K-12, this is a fun way for them to learn about the risks of rabies and much more. Students will learn: 🦇The importance of rabies vaccinations for pets 🦇Respecting wildlife from a distance 🦇Notifying adults of exposure to an infected animal The Zach Jones Memorial Fund provides generous prizes for winners in each age group (K, 1-2, 3-5,… Read More →