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Extension Education

James Davis
County Extension Director
UF/IFAS Extension Sumter County


The presence of COVID-19 has had a substantial impact on urban pest management. Quarantines resulted in increased stored food and shelter for pests in the forms of such materials as cardboard boxes or paper bags. has stated that summer high temperatures, excessive rain, and the impact of COVID-19 could create the perfect storm for urban pests. Increased pests can result in serious health problems, costly economic damage to structures, and stress to affected homeowners, thus affecting quality of life. Due to quarantining, Extension educators were also challenged to find a way to reach out to citizens and inform them on the importance and diligence of pest management. Extension specialist and faculty created a series of distance education in the form of webinars. Webinars were established in July of 2020 and have continued into 2021. A total of seven webinars were created using Zoom webinar. Pre and post questions were administered utilizing Zoom polling and attendance was captured using Zoom reports. Objective: After attending virtual Urban Pest Management virtual webinars, surveyed participants will demonstrate at least a 30% gain of intent to practice integrated pest management practices (IPM) as measured by pre and posttest utilizing Zoom polling. A total of 539 participants attended the webinars. 431 attendees participated in the polling process. Topics included ants, termites, mosquitoes, ticks, roaches, bed bugs, rats, and other rodents.  In each presentation, the utilization of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices was taught. Overall, we found that the average of all IPM behaviors practiced was 62% before the program. After the programs, we found that the average intent to practice IPM behaviors increased to 95%, a 33% gain.  100% (n=431) stated that as a result of the Extension webinar(s), they will be more successful in managing pests around their home. Initiation of webinars to educate homeowners has been shown to be effective and successful, reaching a wide variety of clientele from all over the world. From this pilot project, a 6-month and 12-month post survey via Qualtrics will be used to report behavior change.


Poster has NOT been presented at any previous NACAA AM/PIC

This poster is being submitted for judging. It will be displayed at the AM/PIC if not selected as a State winner. The abstract will be published in the proceedings.

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Authors: J. E. Davis, Faith Oi
  1. Davis, J. Multi-County Extension Director, UF/IFAS Sumter County Extension, Florida, 335138716
  2. Oi, F. Associate Professor, UF/IFAS Department of Entomology and Nematology, Florida, 32653