North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has recently partnered with FieldWatch. The purpose of this program is to improve communication between commercial specialty crop growers, beekeepers, and licensed pesticide users. Until recently, 13 other states developed a partnership with FieldWatch, which now includes North Carolina.
FieldWatch is a three-part web based system. The FieldWatch portion of this system is for licensed pesticide applicators use in determining sensitive areas prior to making pesticide applications. The driftwatch portion is for commercial growers use to map out their specialty crop field locations. The Beewatch portion is for beekeepers use to map out their apiary locations in order to minimize accidental insecticide exposure to that area during critical times of the day and during the flowering stage of plants when pollinators are more attached to these specialty plants. In this program, each of these components work simultaneously together for the growers, licensed applicators, and beekeepers to monitor mapped locations prior to making the necessary crop treatments.
The FieldWatch program is non-regulatory, solely can be used on the voluntary basis and the best part is that it’s FREE. The use of the program is free to all users, with many thanks to a grant from the Pesticide Environmental Trust Fund. North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services invested in the FieldWatch program as part of expanding efforts to bring awareness to the public about pollinator protection as well as to protect and increase these valuable pollinators we have in our state that many growers rely on for successful crop production.
If you are a commercial specialty crop grower, licensed pesticide applicator, and/or beekeeper, you may use the following link to access the FieldWatch System for more information and to register. https://driftwatch.org/
Della King is an extension agent with the Sampson County Cooperative Center specializing in field crops. She can reached by phone 910-592-7161.