Habitat Herbicide Approved for Use in California

Habitat herbicide, from BASF Professional Vegetation Management, has received approval from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation for use in California.

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, North Carolina — Habitat herbicide, from BASF Professional Vegetation Management (ProVM), has received approval from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation for use in California. Habitat is labeled for controlling various undesirable emergent, shoreline and woody wetland aquatic vegetation in and around standing and flowing water - including lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, seeps, drainage ditches, canals, reservoirs, terrestrial, estuarine, marine and aquatic sites and seasonal wet areas.

Habitat is specifically developed for use in sensitive aquatic environments, the herbicide helps stem the tide against the invasion of undesirable aquatic plants and restore aquatic environments to their desirable condition. The herbicide uses less active ingredient and breaks down quickly, yet is highly effective. It provides targeted vegetation control by affecting enzymes found only in plants, not in humans, animals, birds, fish or insects.

Each year, undesirable aquatic plant species cause extensive damage and cost millions of dollars in control and restoration to wetlands and riparian areas nationwide. These weeds can also damage habitat that is essential to the recovery of threatened and endangered species.

In California, Habitat controls the following:

-- Brazilian pepper
-- Purple loosestrife
-- Cattail
-- Reed canarygrass
-- Chinese Tallow Tree
-- Swamp rose
-- Cogongrass
-- Russian-olive
-- Giant reed
-- Saltcedar
-- Junglerice
-- Smartweed
-- Knapweeds
-- Spartina
-- Knotweed
-- Sumac
-- Swamp morning glory or water spinach
-- Melaleuca
-- Phragmites
-- Torpedo grass
-- Willow

"The registration of Habitat in California is a very welcome addition to the toolkit for managing unwelcome weeds. I hope that resource managers will use Habitat alone and in combination with glyphosate in an environmentally responsible manner for a long time to come," said Dr. Nelroy E. Jackson, member of the California Invasive Weed Awareness Coalition and vegetation management consultant.

In Southern California, Habitat will be used to control a giant reed infestation on 10,000 acres in the Santa Ana river basin. Habitat will also be used to control spartina, an invasive cordgrass in San Francisco Bay that is invading habitat for native species and changing the ecology of the bay's mudflats. Habitat will also be used to treat saltcedar, an invasive weed that can consume up to twice the water of native plants like willow and cottonwood trees, posing a serious threat to the stability of native plant communities.

"In light of the registration of Habitat in California, our plans are for almost the exclusive use of Habitat for spartina control in San Francisco Bay," said Erik Grijalva, field operations manager, Invasive Spartina Project. "Without the full registration, it would have been extremely difficult for us to pursue a large scope treatment effort in the bay. With Habitat we're able treat the entire infestation. Also, with Habitat we use a lot less chemical and it enables aerial application, which makes it much more appropriate for what we need done here in the bay."

To learn more about Habitat, visit www.vmanswers.com.

About BASF: Primarily a chemical company, BASF's portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. BASF develops new technologies for environmental protection and social responsibility. In 2004, BASF had about 82,000 employees and posted sales of more than $30 billion. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.

Source: Business Wire, BASF