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Turfgrass Insects of the United States and Canada$
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Patricia J. Vittum

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501747953

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501747953.001.0001

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Principles of Integrated Pest Management

Principles of Integrated Pest Management

(p.370) 25 Principles of Integrated Pest Management
Turfgrass Insects of the United States and Canada

Patricia J. Vittum

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines the principles of integrated pest management (IPM). IPM often is defined as a program that, in the context of the environment and the population dynamics of pests, uses many different techniques and strategies in as compatible a manner as possible to maintain pest population levels below those causing economic injury. The concept of IPM was initially developed in traditional agriculture, where the success of a crop was measured in economic yield (quantity and quality of produce). The key to such agricultural IPM programs has always been establishing consistent and reliable “economic thresholds” — pest populations at which the cost of expected crop damage exceeds the cost of implementing control. In turf, the expected economic benefit from reducing a pest population usually is much more difficult to measure than in agriculture. It is difficult, if not impossible, to determine the economic value of suppressing pest insects. As a result, “economic thresholds” in turf IPM usually are more accurately described as “tolerance levels,” or “action thresholds.” In a turf IPM program, the turf manager must determine what pest populations can be tolerated without incurring unacceptable damage. The basic components of an IPM approach include assessing a site, monitoring and predicting pest activity, setting thresholds, managing turf stress, identifying and optimizing management options, and evaluating the results.

Keywords:   integrated pest management, pest population levels, economic injury, economic yield, crop damage, pest insects

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