Conventional and Biotechnological approaches for Pest Management: Potential and Limitations uri icon

abstract

  • There has been a tremendous change in the pest spectrum and the pestmanagement practices over the past five decades. Several insect specieshave attained the status of a major pest, while insect resistance toinsecticid,es and pest resurgence have been observed on a large scale as aresult of indiscriminate use of pesticides. Over the past five decades, therehas been a qualitative shift in pest management tactics from cultural andmechanical control and use of synthetic insecticides to greater use ofmicrobials, natural plant products, selective insecticides, and geneticallymodified insect-resistant crops. Strategies for pest management, in general,have been dominated by the search for a 'silver bullet' products /interventions to minimize the losses due to insect pests. However,therapeutic interventions into biological and ecological systems provideonly a short-term relief, and the effects of such interventions are neutralizedby the countermoves within the biological and ecological systems. Longtermanswers to pest problems can on(y be sought by re-structuring andmanaging ecosystems in a way that enhance the ability of in-builtmechanisms to resist insect damage, while the therapeutic tactics serve asa back up to the natural regulatory processes. There is a need to exploit themodern tools ofbiotechnology for pest management to increase the efficacyof biopesticides and natural enemies, and increase the levels of host plantresistance to insects through genetic engineering and gene pyramiding forsustainable crop protection and environment conservation

publication date

  • 2012