Advantages and Disadvantages of Biological Pest Control
Considering the advantages and disadvantages of biological pest control can enable a farmer to determine whether this method is suitable for controlling pests in their farms. Whether insects or rodents, pests are generally annoying when they invade a farm or garden. Controlling them is not only costly, but it can also affect the environment and even disrupt the natural diversity.
Biological pest control is a method in which a pest is controlled through the use of its natural enemies such as predators, parasites and diseases as well as competing organisms. This method provides one of the alternatives to the broad-spectrum that entails the use of pesticides some of which can kill beneficial insects.
Nevertheless, before using this method to control pests it is imperative that a farmer consider its advantages and disadvantages. Among the advantages of using biological pest control method is the fact that it is a specific strategy. When a predator is introduced in a farm, in most cases it deals with the target pest only. Thus, only the population of the harmful pest will be reduced by the predator. For instance, while some pesticides can kill beneficial insects such as bees, biological pest control will kill the target pest or insect only.
Once the biological enemies have been introduced in the farm, they can sustain themselves while reducing the target pest population. This implies that no much effort is required to keep sustain pest control strategy unlike the use of pesticides where a farmer has to keep spraying the crops.
Over time, biological pest control method can be a cost-effective strategy of dealing with pests. This is because after introducing the enemy of the pest, it will reproduce naturally and continue killing the insect. Thus, you do not have to re-introduce the enemy again as long as the environment is suitable for reproduction.
Some of the disadvantages of biological pest control include the fact that this method can fail to control the target pest in some cases. This is because as long as the pest is set free in the farm, it can always run away from its predator.
Biological pest control is also slow. For biological predators to control the pest completely it will take time and at this time, the pest are damaging the crops. In addition, biological enemies of a particular pest will only survive if that pest is present in the garden. Once the pests are no longer available, the predators will migrate and after sometimes you will be required to reintroduce them again.
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