The 2021 Texas Rodent Academy, conducted by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, is scheduled Dec. 14-15 in Dallas.
The two-day course is designed for integrated pest management, IPM, professionals and those who handle pest management in their work for municipalities, universities, public schools and food safety personnel.
Cost is $200 and the academy is limited to the first 50 participants to register at https://tx.ag/TRADec21. Tuition covers course materials and meals. The event will be held at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at 17360 Coit Road in the Water and Land Resource Building.
There will be a certificate of academy completion available for students who pass a final exam as well Structural Pest Control credits for participants who request them and fulfill the necessary criteria.
“We are so pleased to be able to welcome IPM professionals to this in-person and hands-on rodent management workshop,” said Janet Hurley, AgriLife Extension integrated pest management specialist, Dallas. “Over the past two years, we’ve seen buildings and businesses closed for periods of time. Combine that with changing behavior patterns and alternate food sources for rats, and we’ve witnessed problems and issues we hadn’t experienced before.”
Speakers and goals
Hurley said the goal of the Texas Rodent Academy is to provide a highly focused and standardized approach to managing rodent populations through IPM. After completing the course, participants will be able to manage rodent populations more effectively due to an improved understanding of the biology, behavior and habitat of rodents.
Participants will also learn about contributing factors to infestation, effective ways of evaluating site-specific responses and strategies, and effective communication strategies with the public to achieve lasting change and improvements.
“We’re excited to be able to present so many leaders in the IPM field to discuss these issues and the latest technology, studies and solutions related to pest management,” she said.
In addition to Hurley, urban rodentology speakers include Niamh Quinn, Ph.D., human-wildlife interactions advisor, South Coast Research and Extension Center, University of California, Irvine; Claudia Riegel, Ph.D., City of New Orleans Mosquito, Termite, Rodent Control Board director; and City of New Orleans Mosquito, Termite, Rodent Control Board member Timmy Madre.
Classroom topics will include:
• Health significance of rodents.
• Rodents and allergens.
• Biology and behavior of rodents.
• Overview of integrated pest management.
• Pesticide labels and federal regulations.
• Exterior bait boxes – what, where and how?
• Alternative tools & techniques for rat control.
• Mouse Integrated pest management in apartment/private homes.
• Rodent control.
Participants should wear comfortable shoes and dress for being outdoors. Participants will be broken up into smaller groups for outdoor learning, which includes:
• What to look for at site-specific inspections.
• Bait station, snap traps, exclusion.