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Online Testing Now Available for Montana Pesticide Applicators

The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) is providing a new opportunity for pesticide applicators to take exams online through the Metro Insititute Centers

"We are excited to provide Montana's applicators with a new opportunity to take their tests online," said Rory Ruffner, Pesticide Licensing, Registration & Training Program Manager at Montana Department of Agriculture. "The Department aims to provide services that are efficient and easy to use and this new online option does exactly that. The challenges of the last year have shown that our applicators are willing to utilize technology and see it as a solution that can help them succeed."

The exams are computer-based and allow for instant exam results and analysis. The cost for online exams taken through Metro Institute is $58. MDA will continue to proctor tests in person and applicators are encouraged to work with staff at their local MDA Field Office to arrange a testing time. 

Click here to sign up for an online pesticide exam through Metro Institute.  Currently testing facilities are available in Great Falls, Missoula, Bozeman, Helena, and Glendive with more cities to be added in the near future.


COVID-19 UPDATE FOR PESTICIDE APPLICATOR TESTING:

The way tests are proctored and where the exams are given has changed to minimize the risk of exposure.  Please contact your local MDA Field Office to schedule an exam using the following website:  https://agr.mt.gov/ASBFieldOffices


 

The Montana Department of Agriculture approves all trainings for pesticide applicators and dealers regardless of location and license type. Generally, over 400 trainings are approved for Continuing Education Credits (CEs) each year. Some are sponsored by MDA, many are sponsored by industry, professional organizations, online training institutions, universities, and more.

Use the links below to find the information you need.


Helpful tips for MDA trainings:

  • Register in advance for the webinars you wish to attend.
    • See a training you’d like to participate in? Just click on the link to register
  • Additional information is also available in the MTPlants Course Locator. Select Webinar for the Meeting Type and enter (including asterisks) *March Initial Core Training* in the Meeting Name to pull up this specific training.
  • You may be automatically directed to download Zoom when registering for a training. This is a quick and easy process. While not required, you can sign up for a free Zoom account at: https://zoom.us/signup. For the fastest and smoothest process, download Zoom ahead of time. This will help you be prepared so that you don’t end up late to a training.
  • It’s a good idea to join your scheduled training(s) 5 minutes before the training begins. 
  • Your license number is required to document attendance for any recertification training.
  • NOTE: Core training is the foundational test for all licenses. Applicators also require successful testing in at least one category specific classification. For a list of classifications go to https://agr.mt.gov/Topics/Topics-N-P/Pesticide-License-Program

2021 Webinar Training Events Calendar

Date Time & Course Link Topic Presenter Course Info
May 11-12, 2021
**CLOSED**
 9am - 4pm each day
 

Instructions: Go to above link. Select "New Item Type" and select "Course Registration" and "Add New Item". Click on the drop down menu for "Specific Item" and select course. A Zoom webinar link will be sent to registrants.

Deadline to register: April 26, 2021

50 person maximum

**Valid email is required for this webinar. Zoom training access must be done from a computer where you can type.  

For more information contact: Lisa Dorrington 406.444.3732

May Initial Core Training  MDA Staff

This training is for Montana pesticide applicators and dealers. Initial Core Training is on pesticide safety and regulations and requirements for every certified applicator. This course is meant to provide training for initial certification. Recertification credits will not be available for attendance at this training.

Course Fee: $75 (includes National Core manual and initial core packet)

NOTECore training is the foundational test for all licenses. Applicators also require successful testing in at least one category specific classification. For a list of classifications go to https://agr.mt.gov/Topics/Topics-N-P/Pesticide-License-Program

Ongoing

Self-paced Initial Core Training

https://mtplants.mt.gov/CartInfo/PublicCart.aspx

Instructions: Go to above link. Select "New Item Type" and select "Course Registration" and "Add New Item". Click on the drop-down menu for "Specific Item" and select course. A Moodle invite link will be sent to registrants. 

**Valid email is required for online training.   

For more information contact: Lisa Dorrington 406.444.3732

 Initial Core Training Online

This training is for Montana pesticide applicators and dealers. Initial Core Training is on pesticide safety and regulations and requirements for every certified applicator. This course is meant to provide training for initial certification. Recertification credits will not be available for attendance at this training.

Course Fee: $75 (includes National Core manual and initial core packet)

NOTECore training is the foundational test for all licenses. Applicators also require successful testing in at least one category specific classification. For a list of classifications go to https://agr.mt.gov/Topics/Topics-N-P/Pesticide-License-Program

 


Contact


Lisa Dorrington
Pesticide Education Specialist
Phone : (406) 444-3732
E-mail : LisaDorrington@mt.gov
Fax : (406) 444-9493
302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Vacant
Training Development Specialist

Phone : (406) 444-5512
E-mail : Myles.Sailer@mt.gov
Fax : (406) 444-9493
302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Rory Ruffner
Pesticide Licensing, Registration, & Training Program Manager

Phone : (406) 444-3676
E-mail : Rory.Ruffner@mt.gov
Fax : (406) 444-9493
302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Events


Upcoming Initial Certification Trainings

Check back for updates.


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Montana Department of Agriculture Reminds Montanans to Sow Safe Seeds

Buying and planting seed from licensed dealers protects Montana from invasive species

Montana Department of Agriculture Reminds Montanans to Sow Safe Seeds

As people across the state gear up to plant their gardens this spring, the Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) is reminding growers about the importance of buying and planting seeds from licensed seed dealers to protect against invasive species and plant diseases.

“Spring is such an exciting time for agriculture in Montana, from our farmers and ranchers out in the field to the folks planting gardens in their backyard,” said Director Mike Foster. “Along with this excitement comes a responsibility to look after our state by purchasing seeds from trustworthy sources. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Department to ensure that your seeds are safe before planting them.”

Last year, residents in all 50 states received unsolicited “mystery seeds” through the mail that originated in China causing federal and state agencies to urge recipients not to plant them, and to contact their state regulatory officials to submit them for testing or dispose of them instead. Close to 150 seed packages were received in Montana and sent to USDA’s Animal and Plant Inspection Service (APHIS) for testing. A mix of ornamental, fruit and vegetable, herb and weed species were discovered and fortunately determined not to be severely hazardous. In this case, the unsolicited seeds appear to have been sent as part of a brushing scam designed to boost e-commerce rankings for companies by shipping items to unknowing individuals and then creating false profiles and fabricated positive reviews.

Whether it be as part of a brushing scam or otherwise, planting unknown or unsolicited seeds can introduce harmful pests and/or diseases. To ensure your seeds are safe, please:

  • check to confirm the seed species information is printed on the seed package
  • do not plant any seeds of unknown species or origin
  •  verify seed suppliers are licensed in MT at mtplants.mt.gov or call MDA at (406) 444-3144.

The Federal Seed Act and Montana Seed Laws require seed sellers and distributors to plainly label their packages. The MDA Seed Program ensures that seeds offered for sale in Montana are truthfully labeled for identity, purity, and viability. To learn more, visit the Montana Department of Agriculture’s web page at agr.mt.gov/SeedProgram.

Documents to download

Over $2 Million Awarded Through Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Program

Over 130 MT counties, tribes, conservation districts, local communities, and educators awarded funds to develop and implement noxious weed management programs

Over $2 Million Awarded Through Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Program

The Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council announced the recipients of over $2 million awarded through the Montana Noxious Weed Trust Fund grant program. Over 130 Montana counties, tribes, conservation districts, local communities, and educators were awarded funds to develop and implement noxious weed management programs across Montana.

“I was very impressed with the quality of projects submitted to the noxious weed grant program this year,” said Mike Foster, Director of Montana Department of Agriculture. “These projects play a crucial role in preserving agricultural lands and livelihoods here in Montana, and I’m looking forward to seeing their work in action.”

The Noxious Weed Trust Fund (NWTF) grant hearings and deliberations were held virtually March 8-12th. Click here to view the full list of 2021 grant project recipients.