Beetle pesticides are safe when applied properly |

Beetle pesticides are safe when applied properly

To the Editor:

After reading the article in last week’s paper regarding the use of pesticides for the mitigation of the mountain pine beetle, I thought I might clear a few things up.

First, the pesticides commonly used for this purpose (carbaryl and astro) are extremely safe when applied correctly. There are strict rules and regulations regarding their application. These rules are imposed by the Colorado Department of Agriculture.

Some include: not spraying during windy conditions to avoid excessive drift; not spraying closer than 100 feet from any body of water; keeping people, pets, etc. out of the target area until it is completely dry; and so on. There are also issues regarding signage, so people know that an area has had pesticides applied.

Anyone applying pesticides for profit must be licensed by the state. Anyone not licensed by the state, or not abiding the rules, is breaking the law and should be turned in to the authorities.

Also, anyone who is extremely sensitive to pesticides can register with the Department of Agriculture. Their name will be added to a list that is sent to all licensed applicators every year. That way if an application is to be made near such a person’s residence, extra precautions can be taken to avoid any possible contact.

With the pine beetle situation as extreme as it is, we have but two options: aggressively combat them by spraying and thinning, or simply let them eat themselves out of house and home.

Rob Jacobs

J-1 Services

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