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Commercial Applicator Recordkeeping FAQs | South Dakota Department of Agriculture

Commercial Applicator Recordkeeping FAQs

What Items Must be on My Application Records?

According to South Dakota pesticide regulations, all licensed commercial applicators must have the following elements on their records:

  • Name and Address of the person for whom the pesticide was applied.
  • Location of the land or property.
    • Although there is no standard for recording a location, it is recommended that the applicator record the public land survey system legal land description to the nearest 1/4 quarter section (40 acres). For example, an 80 acre field would be NE 1/2, SW 1/4, Section 5, T101N, R35W or a building or grain bin may be located in the NE 1/4, NW 1/4, SE 1/4, SW 1/4, Section 12, T99N, R50W. Note that quarter location begins with the smallest tract of land and proceeds to the larger tract.
    • Advancements in technology has lead to the use of Global Positioning Systems (GPS) in agriculture. If this technology is used, it is recommended to record the latitude & longitude at least to the nearest second.
  • The area, number of plants or animals, volume, or other description of the amount of subjects treated.
  • Date and time the pesticide was applied.
    • It is required that the start time and end time of the application be recorded.
  • The person or firm that applied the Pesticide
  • Name and address of the applicator.
    • Although it is not required, it is recommended that the applicator’s Commercial Applicator License number be recorded also.
  • Trade name or brand name and the common name of the pesticide applied.
    • For example, if Roundup Ultra RT was applied, the trade or brand name would be “Roundup Ultra RT” and the common name would be “glyphosate”.
    • Although it is not required, it is recommended to record the EPA Registration number of the pesticide. As there are more formulations of a pesticide marketed it is becoming more difficult to identify what formulation was applied. The EPA Registration number uniquely identifies a pesticide, if this number is recorded there will be little doubt as to what was applied.
  • Company name appearing on the label of the pesticide.
  • Weather conditions at the time of application including:
    • Temperature (Ambient Air Temperature)
    • Wind Direction and Velocity
    • Although it is not required, it is recommended to record relative humidity and barometric pressure if it is available.
  • Amount of pesticide applied.
    • Total amount of Pesticide Applied. For example, 80 acres where 1 pt./acre was applied would be 80 pt.
    • Concentration of Pesticide. For example, 1 pt to 10 gallons water or carrier.
    • Percent Active Ingredient. This information can be found on the product label.
    • Although it is not required, it is recommended to record any other tank-mix additives such as fertilizer, drift retardant, surfactants, etc.
    • The crop, commodity, or site treated.

What Items Must be on My Records for Predator Control Devices?

All commercial applicators that use Livestock Protection Collars must keep records for each application that include:

  • Number of Collars Placed on Livestock
  • Date of Application
  • Location of Collared Animals
    • It is suggested that the applicator note the Public Land Survey System Legal Land Description (i.e. 1/4, Section, Township & Range).
  • Number of Collars Purchased or Leased
  • Number of Collars Punctured or Ruptured and Cause
  • Number of Collars Lost or Unrecoverable
  • Number of Collars Stored
  • Species, Date, and Location of Each Animal Found Poisoned
  • Any Accident or Injury to Humans, Domestic Animal, or Poisoning of a Non-Target Animal Must be Reported to the Department of Agriculture Immediately.

All commercial applicators that use cyanide capsule predator control devices (M-44) must keep records for each application that include:

  • Number of Devices Placed
  • Location of Each Device Placed
  • Date of Each Device Placement and Inspection
  • Number and Location of Each Device Discharge
  • Apparent Reason for Each Discharge
  • Species of Animal Taken
  • Any Accidents or Injuries to Humans or Domestic Animals Must be Reported to the Department of Agriculture Immediately.

Who Has Access to My Records?

Upon request the applicator must submit application records to the Department of Agriculture. All records must be completed by the close of the business day and include all applications made that day.

Upon written request, the applicator must provide the customer with a record of each pesticide application made to his land or other property.

  • Although it is not required for an applicator to provide the customer with a record of application, it is recommended that the applicator make this provision as part of normal business activities.
  • According to federal regulations, all commercial applicators must submit a copy of the records kept on Restricted Use Pesticide applications to the customer within 30 days.

Commercial Applicators are periodically asked to submit a summary of the applications completed during a calendar year to the Department of Agriculture. This information is used to compile general reports regarding pesticide activities. Individual summaries are held as confidential information for each applicator. If the applicator does not submit an annual summary as requested, the Department of Agriculture has the authority to withhold the issuance of a Commercial Applicator License.

How should I Keep My Records?

There is not required form or method for keeping Commercial Pesticide Applicator Records. However, it is recommended that the applicator keep records in an organized manner so that when called upon those records can be easily accessed and are understandable. Although hand-written records are acceptable according to state and federal regulations, there are many ways that this information can be organized with a computer. There are software packages available that will track business activities and keep application records. It is recommended that the applicator carefully review these software packages to insure that the software tracks all required fields.

Why Should I Keep Records?

An obvious reason for keeping pesticide application records is to maintain compliance with state and federal regulations and to track business activities. However, the benefits that can be realized from pesticide application records far outweigh the time required to keep them. Consider that as a Commercial Applicator you are providing a service to your clients. Providing clients with a detailed record assists them in making future crop management decisions for following crop years. Issues that pertain to alleged crop damage from a pesticide application or non-performance can be more easily resolved if a detailed record of the application is available. Providing an organized easily understood record to your clients is an invaluable service.

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