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DDT 'Aids Health, Saves Millions in America
• H :'''d’’'--'.B SPRAYING corn, cattle helps checks enormous pest damage. By ALEXANDER R. GEORGE AP Newsieatures Writer WASHINGTON. —The value of DDT to farm and city people is being increased steadily. Extensive tests of the war-bora insecticide by agricultural nyie"H* show promise for control of many pests which damage field crops, gardens, orchards, forests, and livestock. Mean while, more and more people are using it for protection against humffrti diseases carried by houseflies, mosquitoes and lice. DDT sprays or dusts have "increased amazingly" the beef and milk production of cows pestered by horn flies, boosted po- tato yields and reduced the I damage of certain cotton pests. | They controlled the European! cam borer in several experi ments and destroyed heavy in-! festations of Japanese beetles and gyspy moths. Emulsions containing DDT have, given good protection to shade trees and shrubs against many] other defoliating insects, includ ing the locust leaf miner, elm leaf beetle, cankerworm, and tent caterpillar. DDT is tough on car penter ants and other insects that attack logs and woodwork of buildings. However, the insect experts warn that DDT is not a cure all for all insect problems. They say. moreover, that its indis criminate use may damage im portant food or seed crops and destroy beneficial insects which keep certain injurious insects under controL The Department of Agriculture, in cooperation with various state agricultural agencies has been testing DDT for more than four, years. The department’s Bureau ] pf Entomology and Plant Quaran- j tine suggests these precautions in : using the potent insecticide: ] 1. Care should be taken to avoid excessive residues of DDT on fruits and other parts of plants of plant products to be used as human food. 2. Persons should avoid re peated or prolonged exposure to DDT in oil solutions as it is read ily absorbed through the skin. 3. Extra caution should be tak en when using oil sprays in build ings because of its inflammable nature. 4. DDT oil sprays should not be used on animals because DDT may be absorbed by the skin. 5. It’s a good idea to consult your county agricultural agent or state experiment station about the use of DDT. The bureau points out that while there is no known proven case of DDT having been in jurious to humans, it is never theless a poison. Therefore, it advises that persons be careful not to swallow DDT or to leave oil solutions of the insecticide on the skin for any length of time. DDT is soluble in oil but not water. j The bureau says that in field tests, DDT has given excellent control of Japanese beetles on grapes, early apples, peaches, and miscellaneous trees and shrubs. Experiments show DDT to be a potent weapon against the cod ling moth, a fruit pest. However, in tests in nearly all sections of the country, destructive mites de veloped to serious proportions in DDT-treated plots except when Xanthone was included in the spray. Three applications of DDT on apples in Hudson Valley, New ork, reduced infestations of the apple maggot from 25 percent to 2 percent. Scientists say that because of DDTs effectiveness against the European corn borer, it is pos sible control of this insect on canning and field corn may be come practical. . Fungicide dusts and sprays, to which DDT was added, controlled infestations of Colorado potato beetles and potato flea beetles. In some cases, the treatment in creased the potato yield by 70 percent. The fungicide-DDT com bination appeared to have no ad verse affect on the potato plants. The insect experts say DDT is well established as “the perfect answer” to the bedbug problem. It also is an important weapon in combating -sand flies, several species of ants in buildings, fleas in houses, and brown dog ticks in floor coverings and baseboards. A 10 percent DDT powder may be dusted on dogs which have brown ticks. About one-fourth teaspoonful is dusted over the en tire body of the average-sized ani mal. Cats should not be treated with DDT because they lick them the key west crnzEK • : -. • - iSHHH selves and can swallow enough of the poison to make them sick. Soil treatment with DDT has shown indication of becoming a practical way of controlling the white-fringed beetle which feeds on a number of crops in some southern states. Infestations of leafhoppers, the alfalfa weevil, thrips and aphids in seed alfalfa Have been controlled with DDT. The insecticide has proved very effective against the gypsy moth, destroyer of foliage in the north eastern part of the country. Extensive tests indicate DDT is a good remedy for such cot ton pests as the bollworm. stink bug, and plant bug. However, DDT was not as effective as calcium arsenate against the boll weevil, an insect which takes a tenth of the cotton crop each year. DDT will control several spe- 1 cies of Lygus bugs that attack the seed stalks and seed of sugar beets. It has not been found effec tive for control of the sugar cane borer. In sugar cane plots treated with DDT, populations of yellow sugar cane aphids have greatly increased. DDT is highly effective against most of the common pests of stored seed. It is best used in combination with a carrier dust to give it greater volume and insure better distribution over the seed. Avery good combination is ob tained by using magnesium oxide as the carrier dust. DDT’s biggest single contribu tion to the nation’s wealth, ex cepting its protection of human health, has been a great increase in beef and milk production. Its use in control of horn flies and other flies which pester cat tle is already worth $100,000,000 a year to cattle owners, accord ing to P. V. Cardon, administrator of research for the Department of Agriculture. Cardon says the returns to cattle farmers will be greatly increased as the use of DDT becomes more general. Agricultural experts estimate that some 8 to 10 million cattle were sprayed with DDT last year. They predict that from two to three times that number will be given DDT treatments this year. The total cattle popu lation of the country is around 84 million. Tiny horn flies which suck the blood from a cow in summertime have cost American cattle and dairy farmers plenty. If flies are bad —sometimes 4,000 settle on a cow—beef cattle won’t put on weight and cows don’t give as much milk as they should. Some experts have estimated the peak horn-fly drain from the farm pocketbook at a million dollars a day. In a test on a Kansas ranch, 600 cattle of all ages and classes were sprayed with DDT. They gained 18,000 more pounds than the same number of unsprayed cattle. On another ranch each pound of DDT resulted in an increase of 2,306 pounds of weight. It was esti mated that each dollar’s worth of jlllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllillllllllllllllllllllllllllillllllllllllfllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllilillllllllljllllllll h | JOB PRINTING j Z Modern machinery and J • efficient methods enable Z • us to offer you superior mk 11 1.1 Z • printing service at fair j^FrnrWTl • prices. Consider us when JII ItTJ • • you place your next print- * • ing order. • • Phone 51 and Our Representative Will Call * i The Artman Press i • THE CITIZEN BUILDING • •OiinilflllllMdllllllllllllllllllKIIIIIIMlilllllllllllllllllitllllllllllllllllllllllllllKimillllllllllllllUIIIIIIIUIMilllKIUIIIIH!* jlllflfy < * ■ -~rlj ;■ r V if I <v- y&mU.-.- - I* I •< A TESTS check poison dangers. Do You Know That The grasses of the world are classified into 5,750 species. Beetles are the bulkiest in sects, the largest known being the Herdules of South America, measuring six inches long. Jamaica was discovered by Columbus on his Second voyage in May, 1494, when he christen ed it St. Jago after St. James the patron saint of Spain, but the new name did not last and the island was known by its na ti\fc narhe of Jamaica. The Skating Frog of India literally jumps on the water, cov ering the surface in big leaps, alighting on all fours and leap ing again as it would on land. DDT accounted for at least 1,000 pounds of beef. In four counties in Florida, 28,000 head of cattle and 120 barns were sprayed. It was con servatively estimated that in the month following the spray applications there was a gain of 700.000 pounds of beef and an increase of 30.000 gallons of milk which could be attributed directly to the use of DDT. The period for cattle spraying in most parts of the country is about 14 weeks —from May 15 to Sept. 1. In the south, of course, the season is longer. -Two or three thorough sprayings may do the job for the entire summer. Insect | experts say it is a good idea to kill relatively few flies early in the spring rather than have to combat millions of them later in the summer. The Department of Agriculture says a preferred spray is a 50 percent wettable powder. It is i pointed out, however, that county j agricultural agents and state col ! lege people can advise hoW to mix ; DDT and how best to apply it. If a farmer doesn’t have a 1 hand spray, he can sponge it on ! or apply with a paint brush or a piece of cloth. Some use orchard spraying equipment. DDT and another chemical, benzene hexachloride, have shown more promise than any materials heretofore used for the control of all species of cattle lice, says the Bureau of Entomology and Plant Quarantine. Both materials ap pear to be capable of eradicating cattle lice with one treatment, i which has not been possible with the older remedies.