Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

IPM in Crops & Vegetables

Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

1

What does "IPM" stand for?

"IPM" stands for Integrated Pest Management.

2

What is the definition of IPM?

In general, IPM seeks to use two or more alternative methods to control pests with a goal of obtaining effective control with a minimum dependence on pesticides. IPM is information intensive and depends on:  

  • regular scouting of the crop,

  • records kept of pests observed,

  • comparing pest numbers to established threshold to determine if a treatment is justified or needed,

  • evaluating results and

  • using records (history) to plan future actions.

3

Why use IPM?

Several Reasons:

Target pests tend to build resistance to pesticides that are repetitively applied, thus rendering the products ineffective very rapidly. This is expensive for the grower and the manufacturing company and makes the pest harder to control over time. IPM systems extend the useful life of pesticides when used in conjunction with other non-chemical strategies.

Most pesticides are poisons that are introduced into our environment. This poses potential health risks to the applicator, other non-target organisms, surface water and ground water supplies. By reducing dependence on pesticides, we reduce the risk to ourselves and the environment.

4

What are the alternative controls available?

The controls available are:

Genetic - identifying and using pest resistant seeds and plants.

Cultural - using a combination of management practices to control pests. In the case of crops; rotating crops, varying rows width, distance between plants, time of planting, time of harvest, cultivation, use of mulches, etc. are examples of cultural controls. In the case of structural pest control, a good sanitation and maintenance program can go a long way toward maintaining a pest free environment.

Chemical (Pesticides) - advocates the judicious use of pesticides when the combination of alternatives listed above does not obtain acceptable controls. In some uses the pesticide chosen is used in combination with other controls while in others, pesticides may be the only alternative available. The term "pesticides" covers a wide variety or products with a wide range of toxicity, from inorganic compounds to the more benign products of Safer’s soap, horticultural oils, Bt’s and insect growth regulators. IPM promotes the use of the least toxic, shortest duration pesticide available, targeted to the specific pest to be controlled.

Biological Control  -   It is the intentional manipulation of natural enemies by human  for the purpose of controlling pests. .Biological control of pests is attractive because plants are important to wildlife and human health. There are three approaches to biological control namely Conservation, Augmentation and Importation. It is inexpensive. It poses little threat to non target organisms and also requires little manpower.. They are self perpetuating and can spread on their own.

5

Isn’t IPM just another name for "organic pest control"?

No. Organic has strict restrictions as to which, if any, synthetically compounded chemical pesticides can be used to control pests. IPM systems allow for the use of chemicals but they must be properly timed and targeted to the pest species and life cycle. Chemical use in an IPM program is integrated with non-chemical strategies for controlling pests and an attempt is made to use the least-toxic alternative available.

6

What is EIL ?

Economic injury level as the lowest population density that will cause economic damage.  It is a measure against which we evaluate the destructive status and potential of a pest problem.

7

What is ETL ?

Economic threshold level (ETL) is the population density of insect pests at which control action should be determined (initiated ) to prevent an increasing pest population (injury) from reaching EIL.  Although measured in insect density, the ET is actually a time too take action.

8

Can we include transgenic plant in Integrated Pest Management ?

Yes, they can be a component of Integrated Pest Management (IPM).  The selected genes that are transferred to the plants are toxic only to plant pests.  Other natural enemies such as spiders, predators, parasites and parasitoids are not affected.  A combination of cultural, chemicals and biological control can also be used to protect plants from pests if necessary.

9

Who can use IPM?

Anyone who deals with pest problems can use IPM. Farmers, buildings and grounds maintenance personnel, professional pest control operators, and home dwellers can learn how to apply least-risk solutions to prevent pest trouble or respond to problems when they arise.

10

What are pesticide hazards?

Pesticide hazards include acute, immediate toxicity to humans and other non-target organisms; chronic or long-term toxicity such as cancer; and potential to contaminate air, or ground and surface water.  Information on many of these potential hazards for specific pesticides can be found on pesticide labels. The adult human body is similarly contaminated with pesticides, pesticide-related compounds and other synthetic chemicals.

Pests can also become resistant to pesticides, increasing control costs, crop losses or other pest damage. Many natural enemies of pests are killed by pesticides, freeing pests from these natural control. These unknown or poorly understood potential hazards argue for additional levels of protection including exposures to multiple pesticides, at home, at school and in the diet; exposure to chemicals in combination with pesticides such as pharmaceuticals, industrial compounds and personal care products; and the general difficulty in attributing chronic illnesses to any one particular cause.

Pesticides are powerful tools for responding to persistent pest problems. It’s not smart, effective or affordable to use these tools when they are not necessary.   Using IPM to prevent pest problems and minimize reliance on pesticides is the best solution for a healthy environment for everyone.

11

Are all pesticides bad?

Most pesticide problems are caused by a small number of the pesticides available today. Many low hazard pesticides are available, and more are being developed each year from both naturally occurring and synthetic materials. However, pesticide use without regard to need or potential hazard is always a poor choice, and rarely solves pest problems.

Improvements in pest management are needed, and pesticides will likely always be a part of the solution.  According to the World Health Organization (WHO), malaria continues to kill more than 1 million annually. Asthma incidence and asthma-associated morbidity is increasing due to exposure as well as exposure to pesticides. 

12

How does IPM reduce hazards?

IPM reduces hazards by reducing overall pesticide use, using least hazardous pesticides when there is a demonstrated need, and taking special protective measures to reduce pesticide exposure living organisms and the environment.

13

How does IPM differ from Organic?

IPM allows the use of pesticides, fertilizers and other materials made from synthetic materials when necessary. Organic programs largely restrict allowable pesticides to those made from natural materials. Pesticides used in organic programs can also have harmful effects on humans, animals and the environment, and must be used carefully and only when needed. IPM strategies can also help organic programs reduce hazards.

14

What is "IPM Certification"?

Certification implies that a professional, product or service meets a well-defined standard.  Certification can be a powerful tool to demonstrate to customers, neighbors and peers in your profession that your pest management practices meet the highest standards for reduced hazard and effectiveness.

Many programs include IPM as a standard that must be met prior to certification.  Not all programs require IPM performance to the same degree - some programs have minimal IPM requirements and other truly seek to identify top IPM performers. 

The NCIPM is now working with public agencies, non-governmental organizations and industry to develop and implement meaningful programs incorporating IPM standards. 

15

How can my products or services become IPM Certified?

Pest control operators, farmers, buildings and grounds managers, wildlife management specialists, crop consultants and others can have their products or services certified under a variety of programs that use IPM as a requirement

16

How trap crops in IPM facilitate in reducing damage/ pest population?

Traps crops are generally  more susceptible to pests and diseases and are planted in advance. These attract more population of pests and killed by spraying insecticide to prevent their migration to main crops

TOP

Cotton

1

What is the rank of India in global scenario with regard to area and production of cotton?

India ranks first with regard to area and 2nd with regard to total cotton production.

2

What are the key pest (Insects and diseases) of cotton?

American bollworm, spotted bollworm, pink bollworm, whitefly are the key insect pests and cotton leaf curl virus, Fusarium wilt , root rot, grey mildew, sooty mould, boll rot and bacterial blight are the major diseases.

3

What is IPM and how it differs from farmers’ practices?

IPM is the integration of pest management tactics in compatible manner to keep the best below economic injury level without adversely affecting our environment. Farmers’ practices involve totally dependence on chemical insecticides available in the market where ever IPM involve need based application of Chemical insecticides.    

4

What are Tricho cards?

Tricho cards are the cards prepared in the laboratory having Corcyra eggs parasitized by egg parasitoid, Trichogramma. These cards are effective against eggs of bollworms.

5

What is the proper time for application of  Tricho-cards in the field?

The cards can be applied when we find eggs of bollworms in the field. We can also apply cards when moths of bollworms (more than two) are trapped in pheromone traps for continuously two to three days.

6

Can we apply insecticide along with Trich- cards?

No. There is should be a minimum gap of seven days before and after application of Trich-cards.

7

What is Bt cotton?

Bt cotton is transgenic plant in which Cry 1 Ac gene has been introduced which provides protection against American bollworm, spotted bollworm and pink bollworm.

8

Is there any need of chemical pesticides in Bt cotton?

Yes, there is need of chemical pesticides especially against sucking pests, tobacco caterpillar and diseases.  

9

Do we need releases of Tricho- cards in Bt cotton?

We do not require releases of Tricho cards up to 3 months as effect of toxins remain effective up to 90 days after that toxin get reduced so we may require releases in the later part against pink bollworm

10

How much area is under Bt cotton and what is the future of Bt cotton in India?

At present about 40% area is under Bt cotton and it is expected that within 2-3 years most of the area will be under Bt cotton except in North especially in Rajasthan.

11

Why Bt is not popular in Rajasthan? 

In Rajasthan Bt hybrids do not perform well due to sandy and low fertile soil and less availability of water.

12

What are the emerging pest problems in Bt cotton?

The emerging insect pests in Bt cotton are thrips, Spodoptera, mealybugs  in all  three zones, mired bug  in central and south zone and  shoot weevil in Tamil Nadu.  Among the diseases grey mildew, rust, leaf spots

TOP

Rice

1

What are key pests (Insects, diseases, weeds etc.) of rice?

Leaf-folder, stem borer, Plant hoppers (WBPH, BPH ), gundhi bug, bacterial blight, sheath blight, rice blast, umbrella weed, nut grass, barn yard grass.

2

Is there any new emerging pest problems in rice?

Yes, in recently released basmati variety Pusa sugandh 4 (1121), ‘Bakane’ disease (extra elongated rice plants) is emerging as main pest problem in some of the rice cultivated areas.

3

What are the overall losses due to pests?

According to an estimate the losses due to pests are about 18%

4

How the farmers are managing these pests?

There is a trend of indiscriminate use of pesticides by the farmers inmost of the rice growing areas

5

What are the possibilities of managing these pests other than pesticides?

Field trials carried out by NCIPM revealed that IPM can be an effective strategy to manage them.

6

What are the main components of IPM strategy in rice?

 Holistic approach of managing the crop through nursery raising to harvest following raising of Sesbania or other common legume crops as green manure, use of disease free healthy seeds, seed treatment, transplanting of 2-3 seedlings, proper plant density per square meter, judicious use of fertilizers, water management, pheromone traps for monitoring stem borer and conservation and augmentation of natural enemies and need based judicious use of pesticides as last resort.

7

What is importance of ETL in rice?

The knowledge of ETL of pest helps in regulating the management option for particular pest eg. For leaf folder the ETL can be as high as up to 20% infested leaves; for stem borer it is 5% dead hearts /white heads; while for plant hoppers it is 10-20 nymphs/adults per hill.

8

What is need of stating the judicious use of fertilizers in raising rice crop?

 It has been found that the excess use of nitrogen triggers the pest problems such as leaf folder, stem borer, bacterial blight, blast and sheath blight etc. and the use of potash fertilizer impart resistance to many common pests. Hence, the macro and micro nutrient requirement be met as per the soil analysis of the fields.

9

What is the role of pheromone traps in rice?

The use of pheromone traps helps in monitoring the yellow stem borer (YSB) and regulating the interventions for its management. In some areas these are also successfully used for mass trapping of YSB.

10

What are the common predators and parasites in rice eco-system?

Spiders, dragonfly, damsel fly, mirid bug, carrabid beetle are the most common predators while Teleonomus spp., Tetrastichus spp. and Xanthopimpla spp. are the common parasitoids.

11

What is role of bio-pesticides / microbials in rice pest management?

These are the safer and effective alternates for managing pests. Microbial like Trichoderma, Pseudomonas has been found effective in managing the rice diseases.

12

What is Tricho card and what is the purpose of using it in Rice?

Tricho cards are used for management of stem borer and leaf folder in rice crop. Parasitoid Trichogramma spp. parasitize the eggs of both these pests, thus larvae fail to emerge from the eggs.

13

Some times spot application of pesticides is advised, what does it mean?

Using pesticides only on and around the affected part of the field is called as ‘spot application’. Applying pesticide in the entire field is not advisable in such cases as it is wastage of resources.

14

Does IPM application in rice increases the input cost?

Experience has shown that IPM technology is less expensive in Basmati rice, as the number of pesticide application is reduced to bare minimum. Other input costs like fertilizer, water are also reduced in most of the cases.

TOP

Oilseeds

1

What are major pests of mustard ?

Aphids, white rust and Alternaria blight. 

2

What is economic threshold levels for aphids in mustard ?

30% Plant infested or 50-60 aphids/10cm short.

3

What are IPM technologies in mustard ?

Early planting, seed treatment with Trichoderma viride @ 4 g/kg seed for control of white rust remove the aphid infested twigs at the initial level of pest attach at community level, need base spray of pesticides.

4

What are the major pests of groundnut ?

Thrips, leaf-spots and tobacco caterpillar.

5

What is the ETL for thrips in groundnuts ?

5 adults / terminal bud

6

What are the IPM activities in groundnut ?

Deep summer ploughing, seed treatment with Trichoderma viride @ 4 g/kg seed, pheromone traps for Helicoverpa armigera and spodoptera litura @ 10/ha.

7

What are the major pests of castor ?

 Castor  semi looper, fusarium wilt & grey rat.

8

What is ETL for castor semi looper ?

One semi looper/plant at seedling stage, 4-5 semilooper larvae/plant (30-40 day old plant) and when defoliation exceeds 20%.

9

What are the IPM technologies in castor ?

Select wilt resistant variety, seed treatment with carbendazim @ 2 g/kg seed, spray NSKE (5%) when castor semi looper population is 4-5 larvae/plant installation of pheromone traps @ 5/ha for monitoring S.litura population, hand picking and destruction of grown up larvae of semi looper spray carbendazim (0.05%) against botrytis if there cyclonic rain.

10

What are the major pests of safflower ?

Safflower aphid, Alternaria leaf blight & fusarium wilt.

11

What is ETL for aphids in safflower ?

27 aphids / 5cm apical shoot or twig

12

What are IPM activities in Safflower ?

Select soil without history of wilt incidence treat the seed with carbondazim 50WP @ 2 g/kg seed sow the crop from mid September to Ist week of October.  Need based spray of fungicides if Altrnaria disease incidence notice

TOP

Chickpea

1

What are key pests of chickpea?

Pod borer (Helicoverpa armigera), termites, wilt, dry rot, Ascochyta blight and Botrytis gray mould.

2

What is main constraint in cultivation of chickpea?

The damage due to Pod borer (Helicoverpa armigera) as this may result in extensive or total loss during its outbreak.

3

How the farmers are managing these pests?

There is a trend of indiscriminate use of pesticides by the farmers.

4

What are the possibilities of managing these pests other than pesticides?

Field trials carried out by NCIPM revealed that IPM can be an effective strategy to manage them.

5

What are the main components of IPM strategy in chickpea?

Holistic approach of managing the crop through use of disease free healthy seeds, seed treatment with Trichoderma formulation + vitavax / carbendazim; Rhizobium culture and choloropyriophos (in termite prone areas), proper plant density per square meter, pheromone traps for monitoring pod borer, use neem seed kernel extract, HaNPV and need based judicious use of pesticides as last resort.

6

What is role of bio-pesticides / microbials in chickpea pest management?

These are the safer and effective alternates for managing pests. Microbial like Trichoderma and bio-pesticide like HaNPV have been found effective in managing the pests.

TOP

Vegetables

1

What are the major pests of vegetables?

Cauliflower/Cabbage : Tobacco caterpillar, Diamond back moth, Cabbage web worm, Alternaria leaf spot.

Brinjal and Okra :   Shoot borer/fruit borer, and jassid/ mite.

Tomato:   Fruit borer, whitefly and leaf miner

2

What are the ETL for important damaging pests in various vegetables?

Cabbage

Cabbage worm---                 2 larves/plant

Diamond back moth---          4larves/plant in nursery

                                             10larves/plant in main field

Defoliator                              8-10% leaf area

Tomato

 Fruit borer                           1 larve/plant

Whitefly:                               4 adults/leaf

Leaf miner                            6 adults/rows.

Okra

Leaf hopper :                       4.66/plant

Shoot and fruit borer:           5.33% damaged per fruit

Brinjal

Shoot& fruit borer:              1.5% damaged fruit

3

How many days after the spray vegetables should be picked/harvested?

3-5 days after the spray.

4

How pheromone traps can be helpful in managing the pests of vegetables.

Pheromone trap give the indication for arrival of pests in vegetables can be used for mass trapping.

5

Can hand picking of eggs or leaf infested with caterpillar facilitate the control of pests.

Yes. Hand picking of eggs or leaves infested with tobacco caterpillar helps in managing the pests.

TOP

 

 

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