Informed Choices

Pesticide Free Zone

Join the Pest Patrol on
Integrated Pest Management


We've all been bugged at one time or another by pests. For many of us, our first reaction is to reach for the nearest can of bug spray. But, pesticides and fertilizers that run off from lawns and other locations are a significant source of pollution in our environment.

There's a better way to solve pest problems called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). IPM is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common sense practices. Teaching IPM at the grade level can provide children with important information about pest identity and biology, and ecology. It can also help children understand the impact that personal choices...like whether or not to use chemicals to control pests...can have on our environment.

Be a Participant

Endorse the BE SAFE Platform
We choose a "better safe than sorry" approach motivated by caution and prevention.

Join the Healthier Homes and Gardens
Sign NCAP's pledge: "I'll try pesticide-free solutions for my pest and weed problems."


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Join the Pest Patrol on IPM

Free activity books for children. Educational material on Read the Label First! to protect your family, pets, and garden; and find out how to Help Yourself to a Healthy Home. Hands-on workshop about safe alternatives for pest control, mosquito repellent, and cleaning your home. Learn about Mosquito Patrol and tips on how to build a bat house. Posters, bumper stickers, and more goodies for children and adults.

If you, your group, school or business is interested in participating in Join the Pest Patrol on IPM, please contact Nancy Hirschfeld at 985 649-6574 or infchoice@webtv.net for an information package or to schedule a presentation. Health professionals, teachers, public officials and news media are encouraged to participate. Free handbook for doctors on the Recognition and Management of Pesticide Poisonings. For more information, see our Press Release

Every child should have a copy of EPA's
Join Our Pest Patrol: A Backyard Activity Book for Kids on Integrated Pest Management

Informed Choices is a participant in Earth Day Northshore


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Join the Tree Hole Mosquito Patrol!

Mosquitoes have a place in the food chain. Bats and birds are mosquito patrols, too. Build a bat house and you'll have fewer mosquitoes!

Criteria for Successful Bat Houses
How to build: Small Economy Bat House

For more, see
The Importance of Bat Houses
Backyard Bat Houses

Killing bats is not the answer and certainly not what our children should be taught!

Bats invade Slidell High School
1,200 bats flushed from Slidell gym during basketball game
Sports-loving bats back at Slidell High game
Slidell coach Rick Spring said he killed about 200 bats with a tennis racket one night as many swirled over the court.

1,000 bats found home at East Jeff
At East Jefferson, ceiling tiles had to be removed to make sure all the bats were gone, Borden said. Removing bats can be a time-consuming process, he said, because of certain procedures that have to be followed.

"It's illegal to kill bats," he said. "In fact, you don't want to kill them. They eat 300 to 500 insects in an hour. They are actually one of our greatest friends because they eat so many mosquitoes. People build bat houses for this reason."

Bats in Buildings
Exclusion Guidelies
Do-It-Yourself Exclusion
Note: Traps and relocation are not BCI approved exclusion techniques. Removing large numbers of bats from a building may seem impressive to a customer, but is unlikely to be effective. Traps can be fatal to bats if left unattended or if overcrowding occurs. Bats have excellent homing instincts making relocation attempts unlikely to succeed. They will simply attempt to return to the original capture area upon release. Capturing bats at an exclusion site is not encouraged, although capturing a single bat for species ID or removal of an individual bat from a living space are exceptions to this rule.

Contact: St. Tammany Parish Public Schools

Also contact: Slidell Mayor Ben Morris
Parish President Kevin Davis
St. Tammany District PTA

Some more points or ideas:
The Big Brown Bat
The Little Brown Bat
The Live Bat Programs


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Pests have enemes, too! Aphids and Ladybugs

~Tips for fighting aphids~


For Girl Scouts Only
Girl Scout Bug Patch
"Bugged by Bugs" Patch


For more information, visit
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Informed Choices