MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is accepting public comments until October 28, 2021, for a proposed special pesticide registration to allow corn growers to use Avipel® Hopper Box (dry) corn seed treatment as a non-lethal repellant to prevent sandhill cranes from feeding on planted corn. Sandhill cranes dig in the soil to feed on seed corn, and can cause up to 60% of crop loss.
Avipel® deters cranes from eating the seed corn because of its bad taste and laxative effect. It is non-lethal, effective, and there are no other comparable repellants available. The University of Wisconsin-Madison, International Crane Foundation, and Wisconsin Corn Growers Association support the special registration to address the problem of crop damage from sandhill cranes.
About three-quarters of Wisconsin’s 4 million acres of cornfields are in a potential crane habitat. The highest risk counties include Columbia, Dane, Dodge, Green Lake, Jefferson, Marquette, Waushara, and Winnebago, where 60% of the state’s cranes are found. In fields planted with untreated seed, crop loss ranges from 20-60%. More than 25 other states also permit the use of Avipel®, which is manufactured by Arkion Life Sciences, LLC.
The previous two-year permit registration for Avipel® expired July 31, 2021. No reports of adverse effects were received during the previous registration. Avipel® contains the active ingredient 9, 10-anthraquinone – a naturally occurring aromatic compound The proposed registration will go through July 31, 2023.
The preliminary environmental assessment indicates that the proposed registration will not require a full environmental assessment. For a copy of the assessment, contact:
Alyssa Foss, DATCP
P.O. Box 8911
Madison, WI, 53708-8911
How to Submit Comments
Submit comments to Alyssa Foss by mail at the above postal address or email at [email protected]. Comments received on or before 4:30 p.m. on October 28 will become part of the preliminary environmental assessment record.
The special registration process allows states to register additional uses of pesticide products other than those listed on their labels without prior federal approval. It helps growers address local pest problems that cannot be adequately controlled by any available federally registered product. These problems include insect outbreaks, fungal diseases, and grasses and weeds that outcompete crops. For more information visit https://datcp.wi.gov/Pages/Programs_Services/SpecialPesticideRegistrations.aspx.