University of Vermont

Avipel Approved for Corn at Planting for 2010 in Vermont

Stop Birds Pulling Corn Seedlings

Jeff Carter, UVM Extension Field Crop Specialist

Vermont corn growers have a new product available this spring to stop those birds from pulling up your corn seed and young seedlings.  Avipel bird repellant has been approved for use in Vermont for this planting season and has a proven record in other states to stop corn pulling by blackbirds, crows and even sandhill cranes in the upper Midwest.  The Vermont Agency of Agriculture processed a FIFRA Section 18 label to allow use here in Vermont effective April 26, 2010. The product is available through your local agrichemical suppliers in Vermont and they want to hear if you have a need for this product.

This is a planting time hopper box treatment for field corn and sweet corn to stop birds from pulling up sprouted corn seed and seedlings. The active ingredient, 9-10-Anthraquinone (Avipel) acts as a taste deterrent and is naturally found in many plants.  Studies show this product is safe for humans, wildlife, the birds and the environment.  One packet treats 1 unit of corn seed, 1 case covers 125 acres. 

This product seems well-suited to the farmers in Vermont who report extensive bird pulling damage in fields that require re-planting and lead to high economic losses. Since other farmers do not seem to have this problem this seed treatment option will only be used on a small portion of the Vermont corn crop this year. If you decide that you will use Avipel this spring, I'd like to track the results on your farm so we can document reduced bird damage and use the data to get EPA approval for continued use in Vermont.

This emergency use label for Vermont is the result of an FCEA collaboration. (Farmer-Consultant-Extension-Agency) This winter Eric Clifford, a dairy farmer in Starksboro told his feed consultant, Marcel Moreau about the problems he has had with crows pulling many acres of corn last year. Marcel knew that Avipel has been used very successfully to deter crows, pheasants and cranes in the Midwest. Eric called me at UVM Extension and asked if this was a product we could use here, so I contacted Cary Giguere at the VT Agency of Agriculture for his help. Cary was able to pull information from Arkion Life Sciences about the Avipel labels in other states and made an application to EPA for a use label in Vermont. If you would like more information about use of Avipel please contact me at UVM Extension, 68 Catamount Park, Middlebury, VT 05753. Phone: 802-388-4969 or e-mail me at

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Last modified April 27 2010 01:01 PM

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