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Blackbirds, primarily Agelaius phoeniceus, cause extensive losses to sprouting rice in southwestern Louisiana. Methiocarb applied to seed prior to planting at rates above 1.0 g a.i./kg rice (0.1%) has provided excellent protection to sprouting rice in Louisiana under conditions of high bird pressure. To reduce treatment costs, some farmers have used over-flights of methiocarbtreated seed applied at low rates to part of the field after draining. This study showed this technique was not efficacious under conditions of high bird pressure. Four fields treated in this manner suffered 98% loss of sprouts compared to 100% loss in four untreated fields. Large flocks of blackbirds (> 3,000) fed in all treated and untreated fields during the first four days after draining. Blackbirds were evidently able to distinguish between treated (ungerminated) and untreated (germinated) seed. Large feeding flocks of blackbirds were composed almost entirely of females (x = 94%; n = 17); it is not known whether these birds were residents or migrants. We recommend that future studies investigate the efficacy of using mixtures of methio- carb-treated seed and untreated seed at planting time for reducing blackbird damage to sprouting rice. Blackbirds cause extensive losses to sprouting rice in southwestern Louisiana. Methiocarb applied to rice seed prior to planting at rates above 1.0 g a.i./kg seed provided excellent protection to sprouting rice in Louisiana under conditions of high bird pressure (Holler et al. 1985). Use of methiocarb by growers under emergency (Section 18) exemption from the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) has been low, largely due to the high cost of treating all rice seed used in planting (Holler et al. 1982, 1985). In 1985 we determined the feasibility of protecting newly planted rice fields from blackbird damage by aerially applying treated seed on the fields upon completion of drainage after planting. This method has been used by farmers in Louisiana and subjective evaluation of its effectiveness has been inconclusive. If efficacious, this method would provide the grower with a measure that could be used after planting when bird pressure is known to be high. It would also reduce residues in drainage water and it would result in substantial reduction in the cost of protection. Personnel of the Crowley, Louisiana Field Station, U.S.D.A. (formerly U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service), provided logistical support. A. Wilson, Rice Research Station, Louisiana State University, Crowley, Louisiana collected sprout count data from one field. Mesurol -' 75% Seed Treater for this test was provided by the Mobay Chemical . Corporation, Kansas City, Missouri. The study was conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior. The Animal Damage Control Program, including the Denver Wildlife Research Center, was transferred to USDA-APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) on 3 March 1986.