Location: Location not imported yet.Title: The diversity of biological control agents
|SFORZA, R - European Biological Control Laboratory (EBCL)|
Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/3/2021
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: This chapter focuses on groups of agents used in the biological control of arthropod pests (insects and mites), plant diseases and weedy plants. In fact, biological control of other noxious organisms, such as vertebrates, molluscs and pathogens, is less commonly used and has been controversial. Biological control was defined as the action of parasites, predators, or pathogens in maintaining another organism’s population density at a lower average than would occur in their absence. The author presents a minimum of 75 families that contain organisms used for biological control, distributed as follows: 52 families in eight insect orders, 19 families for pathogens and nematodes, and four families for mites and several for spiders. This shows the diversity of organisms used in biological control.
Technical Abstract: The basic principle of biological control is to restore the balance between populations of pests and their natural enemies. To accomplish this, scientists and practitioners observe, collect, rear, and evaluate insects, mites and pathogens before envisioning releases to control the spread of pests, invasive or not. This chapter presents the diversity of agents utilised in importation, augmentation, and conservation biological control, such as predators (Hemiptera, Coleoptera, Diptera, Hymenoptera, Neuroptera, Dermaptera, Thysanoptera, Araneae, and Acari), parasitoids (Diptera and Hymenoptera), pathogens (bacteria, fungi, viruses, and yeasts), nematodes and bio-herbicides. The chapter is organized according to the target organism groups: insects, mites, plant diseases and weedy plants. Amongst predators, parasitoids, herbivores and pathogens, a minimum of 75 families are presented, including 52 families for insects, in eight insect orders, 19 families for pathogens and nematodes, and four families for mites and several for spiders. This brief overview shows the great diversity of organisms used in all types of biological control. Selected examples provide both historical and current data, with an emphasis on trends that the discipline of biological control is facing in the 21th century.