Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today encouraged producers of pesticide sensitive crops to renew their field and beehive entries on the Iowa Sensitive Crops Registry. “The Iowa Sensitive Crop Registry is an effective tool to support communication between producers of specialty crops, beekeepers and pesticide applicators – all important aspects of Iowa agriculture,” said Secretary Naig. “Now is a good time for farmers, beekeepers and pesticide applicators to reference and update their information using this user-friendly online platform.”
Since 2017, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship has partnered with the non-profit company FieldWatch, Inc., to provide online registry tools for enhanced communication between producers of pesticide-sensitive (i.e. specialty) crops, beekeepers and pesticide applicators. The online FieldWatch™ registries provide mapping features that identify production sites and one mile radius boundaries around apiaries. Producers that have not yet used the registry are encouraged to set up accounts and identify where their fields and hives are located.
Two of the online registry tools developed and provided by FieldWatch include driftwatch, a registry site for use by producers of commercial crops sensitive to pesticides, and beecheck,: a registry site for beekeepers and apiarists. Specialty crop producers with apiaries may enter hive locations using either the driftwatch or beecheck registries. Producer site entries are overseen by state-appointed stewards prior to their inclusion in the online registries.
The intended crops for inclusion on the registries are beehives/apiaries; commercial fruit and vegetable plots (berries, fruits, pumpkins or melons, and vegetables); commercial nursery crops; commercial vineyards (grapes); commercial orchards; commercial evergreen/Christmas tree plantings; and certified organic row crops, small grains, and pastures. In addition, all specialty crops grown certified organic may be designated as such on the driftwatch registry. The minimum field size for all specialty crop sites is 0.5 acre. More information and a link to the registry can be found here: Sensitive Crop Registry | Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (iowaagriculture.gov).