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Pesticide Applicator Study Materials

Alaska has 19 categories of certified applicators, with two sub-categories. The categories are based on the application site and the type of work being performed. Certification is required to:

  • Apply pesticides to someone else's property
  • Consult or advise about pesticides
  • Purchase, use, or sell restricted use pesticides
  • Apply pesticides to a public place, such as parks, public sports field, government facilities, or the common area of an apartment building.
  • Apply pesticides to a school.

Applicators are responsible for knowing and understanding all the material in the study manuals!

All applicators, regardless of category, must study and understand these manuals:

  1. National Applicator Core Manual (PDF 31M);
  2. Alaska Core Manual (PDF); and
  3. Alaska Pesticide Regulations (PDF) in Title 18, Chapter 90 of the Alaska Administrative Code.

All applicators, regardless of category, must be able to perform mathematical calculations

 Most categories require math and calculation skills to successfully pass certification exams. We recommend that you carefully review pages 164-165 in the Core Manual. Additional resources for pesticide applicator math are available from the Purdue Pesticide Program (PDF) and the Pesticide Environmental Stewardship.

Study Materials

Applicators for specific categories must study and understand the material covered in the following manuals and guides.

Some of these materials are avilable for free download, while others must be purchased. Please read the Alaska Supplemental Manuals first. They include specific information about which portions of the other study materials that you must know.

1. Regulatory Pest Management
State, federal or other governmental employees who apply pesticides to control regulated pests. Example: a Soil and Water Conservation District employee who applies herbicides to control invasive weeds on land. Note: Rodent control is now covered by Category 17C.
2. Pesticide Consultation and Demonstration
Government employees, extension agents, and others who instruct, advise, demonstrate, or make pesticide recommendations. Example: A cooperative extension agent who makes recommendations to homeowners about which type of pesticide to use.
3. Agricultural Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides to agricultural crops or commodities, greenhouses, nurseries, animals, etc. Examples: A commercial applicator who is hired to control fungus in a greenhouse or a farmer who applies a restricted use pesticide to a crop on their own property. Note: Excludes soil or commodities fumigation. These uses are certified under Category 15 and 16.
4. Turf and Ornamental Pest Control
Applicators who use pesticides to control outdoor pests on landscaping or lawns. Examples: Groundskeepers who use weed and lawn feed products on a client's lawn, or a tree care company that injects trees to control aphids.
5. Anti-fouling Paint
Individuals who apply anti-fouling paint that inhibits the growth of algae, barnacles, marine borers, and other aquatic life on boat hulls.
6. Aquatic Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides to any type of surface water, including lakes, ponds, streams, etc. Example: A Fish and Game employee who applies rotenone to eradicate northern pike.
7. Structural Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides in, on, or around structures and adjacent areas to control pests in those structures. Example: A pest control company that sprays for spiders inside someone's home. Note: Excludes fumigation. This use is certified under Category 16. Use of anti-microbials within structures (carpet sanitizing, janitorial sanitizers) does not require certification 
8. Public Health Pest Control
Individuals in the health care or environmental health field who use or recommend pesticides. Example: An environmental health officer who recommends pesticides for bedbug control.
9. Right-of-Way and Industrial Grounds Pest Control
Individuals who use pesticides to control pests along rights-of-way for roads, railroads, airfields, power lines, pipelines, or at tank farms or industrial sites.
10. Mosquito and Biting Fly Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides to control mosquitoes or biting flies. Note: Does not allow applicator to apply pesticides to water.
11. Aerial Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides by manned or unmanned aircraft. Aerial applicators must also have a valid pilot's license.
12. Forest Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides in forests, or forest nurseries.
13. Restricted-Use Pesticide Dealer
Individuals who sell or distribute restricted use pesticides to other certified applicators.
14. Pesticide Research
Individuals who conduct field research on pesticide use.
15. Soil Fumigation
Individuals who apply fumigants to soil to control pests. Note: Applicators must also provide proof of product registrant training completion.
16. Non-Soil Fumigation Pest Control
Individuals who apply fumigants to fumigate anything other than soil.
17A. Full Vertebrate Pest Control
Individuals who apply pesticides to control various species of vertebrate animals, whether indoors or outdoors.
17B. Limited Vertebrate Pest Control – Rodents
Individuals who apply pesticides to control only rodent populations, whether indoors or outdoors.
17C. Limited Vertebrate Pest Control – Predators
Individuals who apply sodium cyanide ejectors or sodium fluroacetate collars for predator control. Note: Applicators must also provide documentation of attending a training session on product specific safe handling, proper use, use of antidotes, and product specific record keeping requirements.
18. Oilfield Biocides
Individuals who apply biocides during the process of oil and gas exploration, production, storage, or transport.
19. Pesticide Technician
Individuals who apply General Use Pesticides only under the direction of a fully certified applicator.