Game cover crops for shooting and wildlife need careful managing, with weed control being an essential part of this management. It can however be challenging as often there are mixtures of crop types present. Dow Shield 400 (clopyralid) can be used up until the end of July in the year of application as an Extensionof Authorisation for Minor Uses (EAMU) in order to create a better game cover.
This contact herbicide reduces weed pressure which will help establish game cover crop earlier. Several different crop species, a mix of cereals and brassicas, are established each year to provide shelter and food for game birds. Dow AgroSciences ran a series of trials over a number of years to establish the safety of Dow Shield 400 on a number of commercially available mixes and crop types used in game cover, results of which are below.
|Game Cover crop||0.25 -5L/ha of Dow Shield 400|
|Gold of pleasure||√|
|Triticale and other cereals||√|
√ = safe (√) = some damage X= do not use
“Weed control in game cover crops can be tricky, as there is usually a mix of desired game cover crops and potentially a lot of target weeds all growing together. In mixed cereal and brassica game covers, Dow Shield 400 will control creeping thistles, volunteer potatoes, corn marigold, groundsel, mayweeds and smooth sow-thistle. It should be applied at the 4 to 6 leaves stage of the game cover mix, with weeds actively growing. The crop should be well established but before flower buds are visible. Dow Shield is “safer” to brassica type game covers than Thistlex,” says Peter Waite of Dow AgroSciences.
“Dow Shield 400 has been re-registered as a double strength formulation. Its more concentrated formulation and advanced packaging with self-seal cap technology and no foil has made it easy to handle and makes spraying more streamlined and faster,” he says.
“Dow Shield 400 has full label recommendations for 19 different crops, including swedes, turnips, mangels, bulb onions, broccoli/calabrese, cabbage, cauliflower, fodder beet, forage
maize, linseed and Brussels sprouts as well as most cereals and rape and 67 EAMUs, including asparagus, garlic, shallots, chard, spinach, spinach beet, Chinese cabbage, kale,
collard, outdoor leafy herbs, outdoor leeks and salad onions. Adding together its label recommendations and EAMU’s, over 86 crops can be treated with Dow Shield 400 now and the list is always growing and evolving,” says Peter.
Other products in the Dow AgroSciences portfolio can also be used in game cover crops including Starane XL (fluroxypyr and florasulam), Starane Hi-Load (fluroxypyr) and Thistlex (clopyralid + triclopyr). They are widely used in arable and grass crops, so are easily transferable into game cover crop situations under their EAMU’s. Read the label before use – ensure full incorporation of crop residues before planting treated areas with susceptible crops.
For any EAMU, growers should obtain a copy of the notice of approval via the Chemicals Regulation Directorate (CRD) web site, ADAS offices or NFU.