IPM Implementation

The use of IPM involves the use of a number of strategies to design, implement, monitor, analyze, evaluate available options, and eventual treatment for pest control that produces the greatest benefit to the client and to the environment.  

IPM, or Integrated Pest Management, is a strategy of managing pests that is designed to meet an individual's production goals in the most economically and environmentally sound manner possible using a combination of control tactics.

IPM is a systematic, information-intensive approach which depends upon an understanding of the entire production system. It strives to use several complimentary tactics or control methods to manage pests which makes the system more stable and subject to less production risks. IPM focuses on tactics that will prevent or avoid anticipated pest problems rather than remediate problems once they have occurred.

Implementation of IPM requires a working knowledge of the basic tools available for pest control. It also requires on-going education about the pest complex, and maintaining the delicate balance between pests and beneficials. It further requires the use of the proper tools at the proper time to ensure that harmful pesticides are not used prior to the need to maintain pest populations level below an acceptable economic threshold.

Implementation of IPM concepts cannot occur until a degree of information about the pest population is obtained, which requires frequent and periodic monitoring and analysis. Additionally, the implementer must have a working knowledge of the pest itself, including proper identification and an understanding of the life cycle of the pest.

Implementation of IPM principles will naturally inculde monitoring (scouting) of fields or areas subject to pest infestation. Monitoring involves scouting for the pest, as well as determining natural pest enemies (beneficials). Population numbers are calculated, and environmental factors such as weather are considered (ie some pests are more prone to attack plants exhibiting drought stress).

Integrated Pest Management Basics:
The tactics or methods used in IPM include one or a combination of the following:
* Genetic Control - (planting varieties of plants that exhibit natural, genetic inhibitors to pest damage)
* Cultural Control - (crop rotation, use of locally adapted or pest resistant/tolerant varieties, sanitation, manipulating planting/harvest dates
   to avoid pests)
* Biological Control - (protect, enhance, or import natural enemies of pests)
* Mechanical Control - (cultivation, trapping, pest exclusion)
* Chemical Control - (chemical pesticide applications)

IPM Goals
* Ensure abundant, high quality food and fiber
* Increase net profits
* Maintain or improve environmental quality
* Reduce production risks

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