Submitted to: Michigan State University Extension
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/31/2000
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: As interest in reducing pesticide use in agriculture increases, training materials are needed to help increase understanding of the ecological principles that are the basis for a sustainable agriculture. This 100 page, full color bulletin will help farmers, extension agents and others understand the ecological bases for pest management strategies that do not rely on pesticides alone. Insects, plant pathogens, nematodes and weeds become pests because farm design and management often provide favorable environments for these organisms while providing poor environments for their natural enemies. Two broad approaches to reducing pest populations ecologically, then, are to create and manage farm ecosystems that 1) reduce favorable conditions for pests and 2) create favorable conditions for pests' natural enemies. These strategies are described throughout this bulletin, which takes the approach that "if the farmer knows why, he will teach himself how."