This refers to the control of pest in order to keep them at a level that is below economic injury. Simply put, it is the use of several pest control methods with the aim of not incurring economic losses and reducing risk to humans.
WHY is IPM (Integrated Pest management important?)
• It reduces the risk of diseases spreading form pest carriers like rodents to human beings and domesticated animals.
• It reduces human-pest conflict.
• It encompasses safe and humane pest control techniques that also tend to be environmentally friendly.
• When IPM is well practiced, there is reduction in destruction of property and farm produce.
What methods does it encompass?
First of all it is important to note that the methods used are usually long term pest control measures that sometimes may include changing ecosystems in order to control pest populations in certain areas. With the right techniques, pests are eliminated in an environmentally friendly manner. These methods used include
• Biological methods- these can include use of natural predators to remove the pests from the area. Generally every pest has a natural enemy; the trick is to use the one that works best for you causing least damage to your crops. For instance cats and dogs in a farm are perfect to keep away rodents.
• Chemical control – this can include use of chemicals that are either repellent to the pests or sometimes kill them. Pesticides are very popular in places where rodents are out of control. The advantage of this method is that it is generally the fastest way to get rid of pests in the short term.
• Mechanical means- this is where use of traps and other such devices comes in. Some mechanical methods of pest control are usually not very human. For a humane effective method, look for gadgets that either leave the pest alive without injury like body traps or those that kill them, like powerful snap traps.
• Cultural control means- this is when people adopt different cultural practices when it comes to cultivating their farms. For instance, changing to a new crop which is not friendly to the pest in the area.
What is the overall benefit of using these methods?
Pests can be a nuisance and destructive, the use of IPM ensuring that by using all possible available methods for you, you are able to control pest in your area or home. You can look up your local authorities on guidelines on the best options to take for your situation.
What is Integrated Pest Management?