AGRI5506 Integrated Pest Management

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Production of fibre, feed and food in fields, greenhouses and forests requires environmental manipulation to optimise production. At the same time, these manipulations may favour population growth of organisms, which can become economically important pests. That is, they may be able to take advantage of the production system we have created. A production system should be designed to balance two somewhat opposing requirements: (1) safeguarding the production against pests; and (2) maximising productivity. These two requirements are considered antagonistic, because one typically reduces the other. For instance, a very high yielding variety is typically more susceptible to pests and diseases. Also, applications of pesticides may increase safeguarding against pests, but it lowers productivity due to higher input costs. This unit focuses on successful safeguarding of crops against pests, and requires in depth understanding about the driving ecological factors and the biology of the organisms involved. Students discuss and explore the concepts of 'pests' and 'pest management' in agricultural systems with particular reference to agricultural systems in Western Australia. However, they also cover case stories from other parts of the world and discuss integrated pest management (IPM) in an international context. The unit should be considered relevant to students with interests in production systems, natural resource management, environmental risk assessment, food security and environmental/ecological modelling.
Students are able to (1) understand the common characteristics of the major pest groups that contribute to their development as pest organisms; (2) explain the economic, environmental and societal costs of the major pest groups; (3) describe approaches to biosecurity; (4) describe major pathways and barriers to pest invasion; (5) describe basic processes of insect functioning and how these relate to pest status; (6) describe the economic injury level and its importance in an IPM program; (7) identify the major techniques used for pest monitoring and surveillance; and (8) identify, compare and evaluate pest management tactics.
Typically this unit is assessed in the following ways: (1) a theory quiz; (2) a paper developing an IPM plan; and (3) preparation of an insect collection. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Theodore Evans
Unit rules
SCIE3351 Integrated Pest Management, SCIE8351 Integrated Pest Management
Contact hours
total workload: 150 hours; contact hours: 5 days (1 day per fortnight)

New, T. R. Insects and Pest Management in Australian Agriculture: OUP 2002 

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