Complete Guide to Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Are you tired of pests damaging your crops, properties, and health?
Birds, rodents, and insects are everyday pest struggles in South Carolina. Studies show that about 40% of food crops fall to pests and pest-caused diseases yearly.
What is meant by integrated pest management? An integrated pest management strategy is the best way to get rid of pests and prevent further infestations. This strategic approach promotes a balanced ecosystem and sustainable bio-based management alternatives.
Are you wondering, “what is the main goal of integrated pest management?” Compared to other pest removal strategies, integrated pest management methods aim to remove pests without harming the natural ecosystem.
So, what are the 5 steps of integrated pest management? What are the 4 methods of integrated pest management? Read on to find out!
Integrated Pest Management Methods
What is meant by integrated pest management? It’s an ecological-based strategic control pursuing tactics with less hazardous effects. Although it prevents and controls pest infestation, IPM offers a more meticulous solution.
IPM combines common-sense practices to reduce the environmental and economic impacts of pests. It focuses on giving long-term prevention using different methods. In addition, IPM promotes using pesticides only when necessary.
It encourages people to use pest control materials that produce fewer risks. Doing so allows people to prevent and control pests from unacceptable levels.
What Is the Main Goal of Integrated Pest Management?
Integrated pest management is different from organic practices. Its goal is to reduce pest populations but not to eliminate them entirely. IPM understands that some pests are essential to a balanced ecosystem.
IPM never discourages pesticide use as some pests are tolerable and essential.
IPM ensures to handle of pests with minimal hazardous effects on the ecosystem. It promotes pesticide use on plants and crops that need them.
Doing so removes harmful pests and reduces their population to a controllable level.
What Are the Four Methods of Integrated Pest Management?
Integrated Pest Management combines different tactical methods to ensure long-term effects. When you only apply one of these approaches, pests can develop resistance to it. To reduce the possibility of resistance, experts recommend using these methods together.
Often, IPM applies the least-toxic method before using the toxic ones. So, what are the 4 methods of integrated pest management?
1. Biological Control
The biological control approach uses natural enemies to control pests and pest damage. This includes predators, parasites, competitors, and pathogens. This method follows the natural balance theory.
Flies, spiders, and bacillus thuringiensis are some examples. All these organisms help in pest control but reduce the adverse effects it may cause.
2. Cultural Control
Another non-chemical approach to pest management is cultural control. Cultural control discourages pest establishment, dispersal, reproduction, and survival. This approach alters the conditions of their habitat.
An example would be to change the irrigation system in a crop environment. With excessive water use, the number of root diseases and weeds increases. This makes it difficult for pests to struggle to thrive and reproduce.
Other examples are crop rotation, cultivation of alternate hosts, and adjusting the plant or harvest time. These agricultural practices help you handle pest infestation at a controllable level.
3. Physical or Mechanical Control
This approach encourages the use of any means to remove pests. You can set traps, row covers, and barriers to limit their access points.
Rodents are common pests that cause plant and crop damage. Solutions would include putting barriers, mulches, or cold storage.
4. Chemical Control
Pesticides are often the last resort in IPM. This approach is also known as chemical control because it uses a toxic substance to kill pests. However, it promotes selective pesticide use.
Doing so leaves other essential organisms in the ecosystem unharmed.
What Are the 5 Steps of Integrated Pest Management?
To guarantee effectiveness, following specific procedures in pest control is crucial. Here are the 5 steps of integrated pest management.
1. Identify the Pest
When you see damage to your plants and crops, your first suspect might be pests. However, it isn’t always the case because other species can damage your property. If it’s indeed a pest, identify them before calling for a pest control service.
South Carolina is home to a diverse population of animals and insects. From feral animals to birds, you never know what can damage your property. To apply appropriate methods, determine which species is causing the trouble.
2. Monitor Patterns
After identifying the organism, study its activity patterns in the area. It allows you to determine if the number of pests is damaging. Pest populations go up and down fast, depending on many factors.
Nature is complex, and you never know what can happen. Monitoring pest patterns can help you plan the next steps.
If the pests in your space cause little to no damage, leave it as they play a vital role in the ecosystem. However, act right away if you notice signs of intolerable economic problems.
Develop an action threshold when you notice the first sign of pest infestation and damage. This is a point where damage is intolerable, and action is crucial. To determine the action threshold, check if the situation falls under any criteria, which are economical, medical, and legislative.
4. Explore Your Options
Prevention is the first step in lowering pest populations. However, it’s still best to look for other pest control solutions.
Before using pesticides, discover other treatments that can help. Only use toxic substances when non-toxic methods cannot resolve your pest problem. Ensure it targets only that specific pest so you don’t harm the entire ecosystem.
5. Evaluate Results
Is the control method used to reduce pests effective? After applying the IPM tool you chose, check if it works. Determine its effectiveness by checking the pest population.
When the number of pests declines, it means the method used is effective. If it stays the same, look for a different solution. You don’t need to apply more treatments unless signs show you.
What Is Meant by Integrated Pest Management?
What is meant by integrated pest management? What is the primary goal of integrated pest management? Now you know! IPM is a cost-effective and sustainable way to control pests and reduce pest-resistance rates.
If you’re looking for a pest control company, you want someone who can answer, “what are the 4 methods of integrated pest management?” and “what are the 5 steps of integrated pest management?”
Precision Predator ensures to keep your home and other properties safe and pests where they belong. Contact Precision Predator today to find out more about our integrated pest management methods.