Reflections on insect pest control in crops.

in Agricultural Mindset3 months ago
Dear readers, in agriculture the planting of monocultures on a large scale has caused major imbalances in biodiversity-related ecosystems, because some resistant pests have been developed in different crops of interest due to the overuse of synthetic pesticides and sometimes without the technical assistance of qualified personnel, which has led to a decrease in the productivity of the affected crops, in addition to bringing pollution consequences on ecosystems and public health problems.

There are different methods of insect pest control, among which are cultural, resistant cultivars, crop rotations, chemical control with synthetic and biological pesticides such as entomopathogenic fungi. Despite the diversity of controls that exist, the excessive use of agrochemicals still prevails, therefore, research has begun to promote ecological management techniques in search of maintaining high levels of biodiversity in the systems, since, according to Altieri and Nicholls (2002), a diversified agricultural ecosystem rich in organic and biologically active matter can be considered as a non-degraded and productive system.

In view of the above, a very small population of producers have decided to reduce the use of synthetic pesticides in some agricultural areas, due to the scarcity of mimes, but within all the bad that has brought the economic problem in the Venezuelan region the farmers have evidenced the reduction of production costs when they apply ecological alternatives, which brings with it a balance in the ecosystem, conservation of natural resources and reduction of dependence on external inputs.

In this same order of ideas, in the Mirabel village, parish La Azulita Municipio Andrés Bello, Mérida State, Venezuela, a nonexperimental field research was conducted, led by students of the National Experimental University south of Lake UNESUR, the village has 30 coffee growers, to whom a questionnaire was applied with the aim of collecting the relevant information to determine agroecological pest management trends in the Coffea arabica coffee crop

The opening question of the questionnaire, related to the use of synthetic pesticides, of the 30 producers surveyed only 20% applied this type of products, the rest of the producers used an ecological control based on the use in application of organic fertilizers for the nutrition of the plants and macerated nettle urtica dioica and the neem Azadirachta indica, because, according to producers, it has repellent activity against drill bit which is an insect that affects the coffee crop. This effect is due to the fact that many plants are able to synthesize secondary metabolites that have important biological properties against insect pests, generating an allelopathic effect on insects.

Regarding the use of this type of agroecological alternatives, the producers said that the control method is easy to apply, reduces their production costs and their plantations are healthy, The same producers recommend using this method of agroecological control not only in coffee cultivars, but also in other crops, so as to have healthy fruits, healthy plants and better productivity.

final considerations
Dear readers, pest problems can be solved by restructuring the management of agricultural systems, diversifying agricultural ecosystems, using ecological alternatives that regulate insect pests without altering ecosystems. To achieve these objectives, this type of ecological experiences must be socialized through talks and forums where the experience generated by producers can reach others in different geographical areas.

Undoubtedly, there are ecological alternatives that can maintain crop productivity, environmental and agricultural education should be promoted as a perfect synergy to solve socio-productive problems and start transforming conventional agriculture.

bibliographic references
  • Altieri, M. and Nicholls, C. (2002). "A rapid agroecological method for evaluating the sustainability of coffee plantations". Revista Manejo Integrado de Plagas y Agroecología Nº 64. Costa Rica.


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Thanks for the support dear friends

In my country we called it IPM "Integrated Pest Management" and yeah those defined are the most uses, I also curious about the bio-weapon such wasp as the natural peat control. I am also in the same field of monoculture and agriculture. 😍

Hello @eunoia10, thanks for your valuable comment, I am from Venezuela is a pleasure to meet another user who likes agriculture.

To get into the subject, in my country we also know integrated pest management, which consists of applying all the control methods necessary to keep an insect and/or other organic species out, For this to be effective of course it is important to know the life cycle of the insect.

We have not worked with the wasp peat you mentioned, but it sounds very interesting what you mention, as far as the diversification of crops can be said, that maintains the balance of ecosystems since, Diversity attracts different beneficial insects and not so many others, but they play an important role for agro-ecosystems.

So long, have a great week.