Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Integrated pest management (IPM) is an approach to pest control that relies on a combination of common sense practices for preventing and controlling pests and minimizing exposure to pesticides. For long-term pest control, it is essential to identify which pest is causing the problem and what caused the infestation to arise in the first place. Considerable effort is put toward preventing pest problems by controlling conditions that may attract and support pests (such as sources of food, water, and shelter).
The Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Program historically focused on implementing IPM in school and other structural settings. In recent years, the focus has broadened to include both non-agricultural (such as structures) and, in limited cases, certain agricultural settings (such as Christmas tree production). In general, the program typically defers to the expertise of University of Wisconsin faculty and staff for implementation of IPM in agricultural settings.
Bed bugs have in recent years been making a wide-spread resurgence in the United States, infesting homes, apartments, hotels, retail stores, dormitories, offices, even libraries. The program recognized the need for a "local" bed bug resource that included information both on integrated pest management and various pesticide regulatory topics. As part of an EPA supplemental grant, the program developed a series of bed bug web pages for the public and more specialized audiences. The general topic areas include:
- the nature of the problem
- integrated pest management
- pesticide selection and use
- requirements for commercial pesticide applicators and businesses
- hiring a pest control company
- additional resources
Perhaps the most unique features of these webpages are the following two sections:
- The Problem, which includes a selected compilation of local, regional, and national video/audio/written media.
- Pesticide Selection and Use, which outlines registration, labeling, EPA's searchable database, and misuse concerns.
Christmas Tree Pest Management
The department developed a web page to assist Wisconsin Christmas tree growers manage pests. The resource was made possible by a specialty crop grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Development of the tool included input from Wisconsin growers, the University of Wisconsin, and the DATCP Bureau of Plant Industry.
The website focuses on newer pests – including insects, mites and diseases – for which management information has been difficult for the grower to find. When the resource info link is clicked for each pest, you will find research-based recommendations on prevention and management. On the recommendation of an industry working group, it supplements existing resources such as the USDA Forest Service's Christmas Tree Pest Manual.
Program direction for Upcoming Year
The program will continue to address inquiries related to IPM, as needed. The main goal is to update, reorganize, and develop new content for the program’s web pages related to IPM.
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