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IPM Displays for the Public 2006

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Project Leader: C. Koplinka-Loehr, Communications Team Coordinator

Cooperators: C. Coen, Extension Associate, NYS IPM Program; J. Grant, Assistant Director, NYS IPM Program

Abstract: More than 75% of American households use pesticides; while relatively few people are aware of IPM and how to use it. To teach the public about IPM in an exciting way, we created two interactive IPM exhibits for public places. The first, a dollhouse called the “Pest House,” allows visitors to find and correct ten pest problems. The second, “Mosquito Pinball,” encourages visitors to earn points every time a mosquito-thwarting practice, such as emptying sources of water or wearing repellent, is accomplished.

To provide users with additional information, we wrote and produced ten “pest information cards,” shaped like bookmarks, that accompany the Pest House display; two other publications accompany the Mosquito Pinball. Both displays were hosted by the local Ithaca Science Center, which receives up to 80,000 visitors annually. In 2005, we marketed the exhibits to audiences in the Northeast via direct mailings and contacts, and displayed the exhibits at the NE IPM Regional Conference in Manchester, NH. We estimate that thousands of citizens of the Northeast have become more aware of IPM and how to practice it because of interaction with these exhibits and use of the accompanying educational materials.