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Agricultural Programs

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and IR-4 program

This program is to test potential pesticides necessary for producing forages in Nevada and submit requests for federal testing and registration from the IR-4 program, which is a federal cooperative program established in 1963 to help the producers of minor crops obtain clearances for pest control materials on those crops. The purpose of IR-4 is to work with farmers, agriculture scientists and Cooperative Extension personnel to carry out research and petition the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in order to obtain tolerances for specific pesticide uses needed by minor-crop producers.


Alfalfa and grass hay are the dominant crops produced in Nevada, and pest control options are limited for these crops. The low economic returns from these crops also limit the chemical pest control options for producers. There is, therefore, a critical need to develop pest management information and registered pesticides that can be used in cool season grass forage integrated pest management programs.

What Has Been Done:

This multi-year program educates Nevada growers on pest control strategies and works to increase the number of products available for pest-control activities. IPM strategies to reduce the need for pesticides are also being developed in conjunction with researchers in California and Washington. Cooperative Extension is working with the EPA to have tef, an annual grass that is used for both human and animal feed in Africa and which has been tested as a low-water-use alternative to alfalfa in Nevada, added to the “small grains” crop group — a critical step in permitting herbicides that protect tef crops in Nevada.


The EPA Chemistry Advisory Council (ChemSAC) approved extrapolation of chemical residue results from wheat to tef in October 2008. Tef is slated for inclusion in the small grains crop group during the next international meeting in 2011. Production data for tef has been submitted to selected pesticide companies for consideration of adding tef to their herbicide labels in 2009.

Contact: Jay Davison, Alternative Crop, Forage Specialist, 775-423-5121

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