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EPA Renews Pheasant Repellent for Corn

EPA Renews Pheasant Repellent for Corn

Avipel is a natural organic compound that causes an unpleasant, but harmless gut reaction in birds that eat treated seeds.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently approved a new Section 18 exemption for Avipel Liquid Corn Seed Treatment and Avipel Dry Powder Corn Seed Treatment, allowing North Dakota corn producers to use the products to repel ring-necked pheasants in the 2010 growing season.

Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring, who requested the exemption, says the action is needed to reduce significant economic loss caused by pheasants, and that the situation meets EPA's criteria of being an urgent and non-routine situation.

"Both corn production and pheasant populations have grown considerably in North Dakota over the past decade," Goehring says. "Some producers have lost entire stands of corn to pheasants in recent years. They need these products, which do not harm the birds, to protect their crops."

Avipel's active ingredient, anthraquinone, is a naturally occurring, organic chemical that causes an unpleasant, but harmless, gut reaction in birds that eat treated seeds. The birds avoid treated seeds and seek other food.

The exemption allows users to apply the liquid seed treatment at a rate of one gallon product per 980 pounds of seed. The dry product may be applied at a rate of 3.5 ounces of product per 42 pounds of seed.

Users must follow all applicable directions, restrictions and precautions on the Section 18 labeling. Treated seed must be dyed to prevent use as food, feed or oil processing.

The complete EPA-approved use instructions are available on NDDA's website at www.agdepartment.com/Programs/Plant/Section18Exemptions.html#repellents.

The exemption, which allows treatment for seed needed to plant 1.25 million acres, expires April 7, 2011. All unused seed treatment must be returned to the distributor or manufacturer or disposed of in accordance with federal regulations.

Avipel is manufactured by Arkion Life Sciences LLC, New Castle, DE, which supported the exemption request.

Source: ND Department of Agriculture

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