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The Benefits of Biological Pest Control in Agriculture

Updated on May 23, 2014

Biological Pest Control in Agriculture

Developed nations have used pesticide sprays for decades to manage pest problems; however, growing concerns about the negative effects of these techniques have resulted to adjustments in the methods the agriculture sector takes to deal with this problem. One such method is called biological pest control. This program may vary from using a pesticide, which is least dangerous to helpful bugs, to introducing a living organism meant to attack another organism. Biological pest control in agriculture utilizes a specific living organism instead of chemical substances to control unwanted pests and diseases. The living organism can be parasite or a predator that is released to attack a particular pest.

The technique uses natural pest enemies to get rid of harmful bugs and to lessen the possibility of pesticide abuse and chemical pollution. These biological control agents are generally pest-specific and would rather feast upon the target organism while leaving the other beneficial insects unharmed. Once this program has started, it needs minimal human intervention since the biological control agents can support themselves and propagate on their own. Additionally, the people who live in a biologically controlled area are unaffected and the helpful plants and insects are untouched.

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Reasons Why Biological Pest Control in Agriculture is Better Than Pesticides

Low Cost

Compared with other pest control techniques, biological pest control in agriculture is affordable and creates long-lasting results. Apart from the initial expenditure for importation, rearing and collection expenses are kept to a minimum. The natural agents will seldom need additional biological input and will keep on killing the unwanted pests with no direct help from humans. Biological control is highly effective and economical. Even if the program shows moderate results, it is still capable of producing an outstanding benefit-to-cost ratio.

Effective

Another benefit of biological control is its ability to supply a semi-permanent regulation to damaging farm pests that might be challenging or impossible to manage using chemical pesticides. Furthermore, biological control is more effective against unwanted pests that are less dangerous and only need to be suppressed but not eradicated.

Environment Friendly

Biological pest control is eco-friendly and often more profitable than chemical pesticide sprays. Biological control agents are safe and non-polluting. Usually, the types of animals used in this program are specific towards the targeted pests and weeds. The method also eliminates the use of hazardous chemicals, which subsequently encourages natural balance.

Medium of Change

The effective use of biological pest control in agriculture is only the start of more eco-friendly and natural methods to pest management. With further research, biological pest control could greatly improve pest control techniques in the future and cut the need for insecticides and herbicides. Job opportunities in the agricultural field could rise because biological control has a huge potential economic value. In addition, permanently getting rid of chemical substances in farming means more bio-diversity.

Some Factors to Consider

Although biological pest control is safer and less expensive, you will find a few probable environment risks involved. For example, at times, releasing biological pest control agents has the effect of unintentionally eliminating helpful insects or plant species domestic to a specific region.

To end, both chemical and biological pest control methods are used differently to eliminate unwanted pests. Chemical sprays are effective against unwanted pests that feed on crops in a farming area, but it should be used safely. The economic problems brought upon by pesticide use must also be considered. Biological control is known to be more effective against unwanted pests that are tolerable yet need to be controlled. Moreover, biological pest control in agriculture is environment friendly and in general, more profitable than chemical pesticides.

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