Unit 1 Principles of Pest Control

Content

  • Pests
  • Pest Control
  • Integrated Pest Management
  • Pest Control Failures

Learning Objectives Unit 1 Principles of Pest Control

After you complete your study of this unit, you should be able to:

  • Explain why identification of the pest is the first step in developing an effective pest control strategy.
  • Explain the differences between continuous pests, sporadic pests, and potential pests.
  • Explain what meant by prevention, suppression, and eradication of pests.
  • Describe "thresholds" and why they are an important consideration in developing a pest control strategy.
  • Describe "monitoring" as it relates to pest control and explain why it is important to pest control strategy.
  • Define "integrated pest management" and list several possible control tactics that may be used in an IPM strategy.
  • Name factors that can cause pesticide applications to fail to control pests.
  • Name ways to help avoid the development of pest resistance to pesticides.

Test Your Knowledge Unit 1 Principles of Pest Control

Q. What is the first thing you should do when you detect the presence of a pest that you think you may need to control?
A. Identify the pest to be sure you know exactly what the problem is.

Q. How can pest identification help you develop a good pest control strategy?
A. Identification of the pest allows you to determine basic information about it, including its life cycle and the time that it is most susceptible to being controlled.

Q. Explain the differences between continuous pests, sporadic pests, and potential pests.
A. Continuous pests are nearly always present and require regular control; sporadic pests are migratory, cyclical, or other occasional pests that require control once in a while, but not on a regular basis; potential pests are organisms that are not pests under normal conditions, but can become pests and require control in certain circumstances.

Q. Explain what is meant by prevention, suppression, and eradication of pests.
A. Prevention is keeping a pest from becoming a problem; suppression is reducing pest numbers or damage to an acceptable level; eradication is destroying an entire pest population.

Q. What is a threshold? Why should you consider thresholds when you develop a pest control strategy?
A. Thresholds are the levels of pest populations at which you must take pest control action to prevent unacceptable damage or injury. Use of threshold information can improve your pest control strategy by helping you make a decision about when to begin control tactics.

Q. Describe pest monitoring and explain how it can be important to pest control strategy.
A. Monitoring is checking or scouting for pests in an area to determine what pests are present, how many of each kind of pest are in the area, and how much damage they are causing. Monitoring is important to many pest control strategies, because it helps detemine if the threshold has been reached and whether control measures have been effective.

Q. Define "integrated pest management" (IPM) and list several possible control tactics that may be used in an IPM strategy.
A. Integrated pest management is the combining of appropriate pest control tactics into a single plan to reduce pests and their damage to an acceptable level. Pest control tactics may include: host resistance, biological control, cultural control, mechanical control, sanitation, and chemical (pesticide) control.

Q. You applied a pesticide, but it did not control the pest. Name three reasons why your control effort might have failed.
A. The failure of the pesticide to control the pest might have been caused by pest resistance, choosing the wrong pesticide, misidentifying the pest, applying the wrong amount, or applying the pesticide incorrectly.

Q. What can you do to keep the pests you are trying to control from becoming resistant to the pesticides you use?
A. Pest resistance can be reduced by using integrated pest management and rotating the types of pesticides used.

Additional Resources
Clemson University websites:

  1. Regulatory Services Department of Pesticide Regulation
  2. Extension Pesticide Information Program