Integrated Pest Management Explained
Updated: Feb 19, 2021
Integrated Pest Management Explained
The way pest management works have changed quite a bit over the past few years. People used to see a bug or rodent, then phone pest control and have an exterminator come out. That would be it until the next time they see the pest and repeat the process.
The problem with that, though, is you are just going through an endless cycle of having pests then hiring exterminators, which isn’t an effective strategy in the long run.
Now we have Integrated Pest Management or IPM. You might have heard or read this term before. IPM is the industry standard for pest management today rather than the old-fashioned capturing or extermination techniques.
What is Integrated Pest Management Exactly?
The University of Florida and Florida Department Of Agriculture defines IPM as an eco-based strategy focusing on long-term pest prevention. It uses methods such as habitat manipulation, the use of resistant varieties, and cultural practice modification.
Monitoring will determine whether pesticides are necessary and treatments are made only to remove the target pest. The materials used in pest control are selected and used in a way that will minimize human health risks, as well as threats to non-targeted organisms. The environment is also taken into account.
To sum up, Integrated Pest Management is a type of pest control that uses target treatments and exclusionary methods to solve pest problems. It is about seeing a pest then working to eradicate and prevent it from coming back, instead of seeing it, treating it once, then repeating. Integrated Pest Management is safer as well as more proactive.
Integrated Pest Management Examples
Let’s take a look at some common examples to find out more about how Integrated Pest Management works:
Minimizing Conditions Which Attract Pests
Whichever pest you are concerned about, they all require the same three things to survive: shelter, water, and food. If you take these away with IPM, pest-friendly conditions are minimized. Here are some possible methods:
Consistent mowing and other lawn care
Eliminating access to food, especially outdoor garbage
Any of those actions can be performed with customers and pest control experts working together. The goal is to develop a plan to make properties less appealing and less accessible to various pests, such as fire ants, mosquitos, squirrels, mice, and so on.
Chemical methods are still used in IPM but in a more specific way. Modern chemical pest control solutions are more pest-specific than older ones since the actual chemicals are more pest-specific. Rather than spraying a kill-all chemical all over the place, pest control experts will now use hyper-focused chemicals instead to target the species of pest you have.
For example, an IPM-friendly method for Cockroach control is to bait for cockroaches specifically rather than spray everywhere to eradicate them only to have them return. This bait stops them from maturing, which means the problem is eliminated before it even starts becoming a problem.
Biological methods are also used in IPM. Some specific predators and parasites can act as a kind of all-natural form of pest control. There is a type of parasitic wasp’, for example, found to help control urban cockroaches.
Bats are another example of biological control. They eat mosquitos, so mosquitos are deterred from areas with bats. Of course, if you’re bothered by mosquitoes, you aren’t likely to install a bat colony! But these are just examples rather than typical IPM practices.
Integrated Pest Management: The Future of Pest Control
There are many benefits IPM offers, not only for home safety but also for community safety and the environment. Integrated Pest Management is beneficial for the following reasons:
Promotes sustainable, eco-friendly pest management solutions.
Promotes sound structures and healthy plant life.
Reduced the chances of groundwater and air contamination.
Decreases public, tenant, and worker exposure to pesticides.
Eliminates or eases re-entry interval restrictions.
Eliminates or reduces pesticide residue issues.
Increases or maintains the cost-effectiveness of a pest management strategy.
Reduces the need for pesticides by using other pest management strategies.
Alleviates public concern about both pests and pesticide-related issues.
Protects non-target species by using alternatives to pesticides.
Reduce environmental risks associated with pest management by adopting more ecologically friendly control tactics.
How to Access IPM Pest Control
More and more pest control professionals are using Integrated Pest Management in their treatment plans. If you have a pest issue, an IPM strategy will likely work quickly and efficiently to eradicate the pest and prevent future problems.
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