Finding ourselves working in the agricultural sector implies that our objectives are aimed at growing plants in an efficient way, with minimal risks, representing profitability. That is why one of the main enemies of our crops is pests.
These represent one of the main problems that, if not managed correctly on time, will become a serious problem that will affect our activities’ productivity and development. The most recommended methods for pest management and control, according to IPM (Integrated Pest Management) are:
- The method based on cultural practices oriented to guardian pest control. It is essential to know how the crop is developing, what the most vulnerable stages for attack by pests are, what the most convenient planting dates to escape the attack of pests are, and what to do after harvest to decrease the population of insects that take refuge in crop residues, in the soil, etc.
- The method based on the resistance or tolerance characteristics that the plants possess against the attack and damage of pests. All plants resist some amount of pest injury, without minimizing yield.
It is important to know what the limits of tolerance to pests are, as not to apply insecticides and other control methods before it is necessary. Similarly, it is recommended to harvest varieties that better resist a pest attack at a certain time.
- Biological control. In addition to caring for and reinforcing the action of biological control agents that are normally present in the ecosystem, parasitoids, predators, and pathogenic microorganisms of pests that are produced in reproduction centers or specialized laboratories can be released or applied in the field.
- Interference methods between pheromones and insect repellents. The Integrated Pest Management strategy uses this method so that it complies with the following points:
- Effectiveness against the pest, compatibility with other control methods
- No or low environmental impact
- Lasting effects on the environment and that contribute to modifying it
- Reduction of costs and increased benefits
- Feasibility in the use of the methods and acceptance by producers and society.
The idea of best management practices will continue to be key, no matter the current state of technology offerings.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) considers the specific circumstances for each site and the values and considerations of agricultural producers. IPM has been vital in describing the role and reasons for responsible pest management, leading professionals and advisers alike to identify future biological information needs with affordable services and put pest control in perspective with production objectives.