General Pest Control (Indoors)

All persons using pesticides professionally in Connecticut must possess an up-to-date certificate issued by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

An applicant for a general pest control certificate is expected to possess a working knowledge of the operations performed by a commercial pest control operator and the reasons for performing them.  Outlined below are areas in which an applicant should be proficient.

Diagnosis is of primary importance and an applicant should:

  1.  be able to identify all common structural insects found in the region to include:

Common Structural Insects Specific Types


Brown Banded

Stored Product Pests

Saw-tooth grain beetle
Indian meal moth
Drugstore Beetles (including Cigarette Beetles)
Confused flour beetle
Yellow mealworm
Grain weevils
Mediterranean flour moth
Spider beetles
Larder beetles

Fabric Insects

Clothes Moths
Carpet Beetles
Black carpet beetle
Common carpet beetle

Ants and other Hymenopterous Pests

Carpenter Ants
Pavement Ants and other common household infesting ants
Mud Dauber Wasps
Bald-faced Hornet
Giant European Hornet
Polistes Wasp  
Bees (honey and bumble)


Lice (body and crab)
American Ticks
Brown Dog Ticks


House Flies
Blow Flies
Cluster Flies
Drain Flies
Vinegar (Fruit) Flies

Occasional Invaders

Box elder bug
Dust mites
Clover mites
Pillbugs and Sowbugs
Booklice (Psocids)
  1. know the biology and habits of the species listed;
  2. recognize evidence of infestation, such as damage, tracks, droppings, cast skins and trails;
  3. be aware of conditions such as moisture, heat or light which favor infestation; and
  4. recognize harborages which favor infestation, such as improperly stored materials, loose fitting wood, metal trim, and baseboards.

Having determined the needs of a given situation, the applicant should be able to prescribe and apply the proper treatment.  This requires a knowledge of:  

  1. whether or not pesticides are to be applied; and 
  2. the pesticides used, their properties, such as effectiveness against certain pests and their toxicity to man and other warm blooded animals.  Knowledge of these pesticides should include, but not be limited to:
  1. the dosage and timing involved;
  2. how the pesticides are to be mixed;
  3. the calibration of equipment;
  4. methods of application and the various types of equipment;
  5. the proper storage and transportation of the pesticides; and 
  6. state and federal pesticide laws and regulations.

Familiarity with Commonly Used Products:

Commonly Used Products
  1.  Abamectin - (Avert PT), (Advanced Carpenter Ant Bait)
  2.  Fipronil - (Maxforce Ant Bait), (Maxforce Roach Bait)
  3.  Hydramethylnon - (Siege gel Insecticide), (Maxforce Ant Killer Bait gel)
  4.  Imidacloprid - (Pre-Empt Roach Bait gel)
Boric Acid - (Borid), (Drax Ant gel), (Advance Liquid Ant Bait) 
Chlorfenapyr - (Phantom)
Dichlorvos - (DDVP)
Fipronil - (Maxforce, Termidor)
Growth Regulators
     1. Hydroprene - (Precor)
     2. Methoprene - (Gencor)
Imidacloprid - (Premise)
Linalool - (Demize)
Propet amphos - (Catalyst)
Pyrethrins - (Drione), (Tri-Die), (Uld products) 
1.  Bifenthrin - (Talstar) 
2.  Cyfluthrin - (Tempo)
3.  Cypermethrin - (Demon, Cynoff)
4.  Deltamethrin - (Suspend SC)
5.  Lamda cyhalothrin - (Demand CS)
6.  Permethrin 
7.  Sumithrin
Silica Aerogels - (Drione), (Tri-Die)

Operational Practice 
The applicant should know:

  1. basic safety and handling rules for pesticide use;
  2. how and when to use common types of protective equipment;
  3. early signs and symptoms of pesticide poisonings;
  4. first aid which can be used in the event of pesticide poisonings;
  5. precautions to be taken to protect workers, the public and the environment; and 
  6. the proper disposal of pesticide containers and surplus pesticides.

Outlined below are responses to some questions which have arisen concerning what activities are permitted with an indoor (general pest) and outdoor (custom ground) certificate.  

  1. Generally, any spraying indoors is permitted through the indoor certificate.  However, controlling pests on plants indoors is permitted through the Interior Plantscape certificate.

  2. Spraying outdoors with an indoor certificate would be permitted in situations such as:

  1. for termite or rat control if certificate holder also holds a termite or rodent certificate;
  2. for control of indoor pests that enter from outside, such as clover mites or earwigs, on the outside foundation of the house and on grass in the immediate vicinity of the foundation; and 
  3. for wasps if the nest is in the immediate vicinity of the house.
  1. Spraying outdoors with an indoor certificate would not be permitted for insects that are only casually a pest indoors.  For example: a heavy flight of aphids that is bothersome to people on a porch would not allow an indoor certificate holder to spray the plants in the yard from which the aphids came; and wood roaches coming to lights on a porch would not allow an indoor certificate holder to treat the outdoors.

  2. The holder of a custom ground certificate could spray for clover mites or earwigs on the outside foundation of the house, but not within the house. 

Reference Material for General Pest Control   

  1. Required and Additional Study Materials for Pesticide Supervisors

  2. “Scientific Guide to Pest Control Operations”
    Available from:  Continuing Education Business Office, Room 110, Stewart Center, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907.  Telephone:  800-830-0269. 

  3. “Pesticide Applicator Training Manual - Structural and Rodent (Category 7)”
    Available from: Cornell University Cooperative Extension, Caldwell Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853

  4. “Handbook of Pest Control” by Arnold Mallis

  5.  “Urban Entomology” by Walter Ebeling
    Available from:  Publications, Division of Agricultural Sciences, University of California, 1422 South 10th, Richmond, CA 94804

  6. “NPCA Field Guide to Structural Pests”
    Available from: NPCA Resource Center, 8100 Oak Street, Dunn Loring, VA 22027

Correspondence Course in Structural Pest Control 

"Pest Control Technology".  Business Office - University Extension Administration, Memorial Center, Room 110, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana 47907

“Professional Pest Control In-Service Training”. Correspondence Courses in Agricultural and Home Economics, Pennsylvania State University, 307 Agricultural Administration Building, University Park, PA 16802

Sample Questions to Study Prior to Taking the Pesticide Exam

Sample Questions Answers to select  
Which of the following insects undergo complete metamorphosis? __ Fleas
__ Cockroaches
__ Yellow Jackets  
__ Bedbugs 
Which of the following is (are) growth regulators? __ Sumithrin
__ Resmet**
__ Gencor
__ Precor  
Pesticides that particularly affect the acetylcholine of nerve junctions are: __ synthetic pyrethroids
__ organophosphates
__ chlorinated hydrocarbons
__ carbamates  
Early symptoms of pesticide poisoning may include: ___headache
__ dizziness
__ nausea
__ restlessness  
A nest which resembles a papery upside down teardrop belongs to: __ Yellow jackets
__ Honeybees
__ Paper wasps
__ Bald face hornet

For more information, contact the Pesticide Management Program at (860) 424-3369, or write to:

Department of Energy and Environmental Protection
Bureau of Materials Management and Compliance Assurance
Pesticide Management Program
79 Elm Street
Hartford, CT 06106-5127

Pesticide Certification

Content Last Updated on June 19, 2019