Agricultural Science

Prevention and Control of Crop Pests

len Alfred Ajibola - Tue, 10th March, 2020 @ 12:31 PM

Topics in Agricultural Science

Clay soil explained with its types and characteristics Loamy soil explained with its characteristics Sandy soil: Characteristics of sandy soil and ways to make it fertile Soil explained with its composition Types of agricultural practices Crop rotation explained Benefits of crop rotation Differences between subsistence and commercial farming Subsistence farming explained with its characteristics What is commercial farming? Types of commercial farming Characteristics of commercial farming Importance of forest: Forest reserves in Nigeria Wildlife reserves in Nigeria and its importance Prevention and Control of Crop Pests Economic Importance of Crop Pests Classification of Insect Pests and their Economic Importance Agricultural machines and their uses Causes of soil erosion Ways to prevent soil erosion Asexual Propagation in Plants, Types and Examples

Academic Questions in Agricultural Science

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The ideal pH for the optimum growth of most agricultural crop is between _____.

  • A. 1 – 3.5

  • B. 4 – 5.5

  • C. 6 – 7.5

  • D. 8 – 9.5

  • E. 10 – 11.5

  • F. 12 – 13.5

People who go about their lives by raising and herding livestock such as cattle, sheep and goats are said to practice _____.

  • A. Pastoralism

  • B. Pasturalism

  • C. Herding

  • D. Herdsmen

  • E. Animalism

  • F. Anime Farming

The act of giving birth in pigs is called _____.

  • A. Calving

  • B. Piggery

  • C. Kidding

  • D. Farrowing

  • E. Calfing

  • F. Pigging

Which of the following is not a vegetable?

  • A. Cashew

  • B. Cocumber

  • C. Tomatoes

  • D. Carrot

  • E. Squash

  • F. Eggplant

All plants are crops.

  • A. True

  • B. False

In agriculture, macronutrients are essential nutrients required by plants. Which of the following is not a macronutrient?

  • A. Zinc

  • B. Sulphur

  • C. Calcium

  • D. Phosphorus

  • E. Potassium

  • F. Magnesium

Which of the following is false concerning micronutrients?

  • A. They are non-essential nutrients

  • B. They are required by plants in minute quantities

  • C. Iron is a micronutrient

  • D. Chlorine is a micronutrient

  • E. Copper is a micronutrient

  • F. Boron is a micronutrient

_____ is a term that describes the biological, chemical and cultural control tactics employed to make pest management economical, environmentally friendly and socially acceptable.

  • A. Integrated Pest Management

  • B. Integral Pest Management

  • C. International Pest Management

  • D. Inclusive Pest Management

  • E. Imbibed Pest Management

  • F. Inclusion Pest Management

Prevention and Control of Pest:

Prevention of crop pest refers to the various steps taken to keep crops intact (when they are yet to be attacked by pests). They are therefore done to prevent pests from acting on crops and other agricultural products.

The control of crop pest refers to the various actions taken by the farmer to minimize or stop the actions of pests (already acting) on agricultural produce.

Please read on the agricultural pests and the crops they attack here.

Crop pests can be prevented and controlled through a variety of methods. These are:

1. Physical Control

This process involves the physical or mechanical removal of pest from an agricultural land via various techniques such as:

  • Hand picking.
  • Setting of traps to catch rats and rodents.
  • Fencing the farmland.
  • Use of guns to kill monkeys.
  • Contaminating food with poisons to kill certain pest; for instance, rodents.

Please read on agricultural tools and their uses here.

2. Biological Control

This method of pest control require the use of animals (or other organisms) that act as a natural enemy to pest. By nature, these animals enjoy eliminating pest. The animals used in biological control of pests typically act as a predator, parasitoid or pathogen to the appropriate pest.

You can read on amazing facts in biology here.

Below are some examples of the biological control of pests:

  • Placing hen in a farmland to eat insects. The hen acts as a predator to various insects. In this regard, crops planted on the farmland should not be a meal to the hen, for example, maize.
  • Putting parasitic wasps on a farmland to infect aphids and their eggs. They also infect and kill caterpillar worms, moth larvae, elm leaf beetle, giant whitefly, mealybugs and lace bugs.
  • The proliferation of the European rabbit (a pest in Australia) can be controlled by introduction of myxoma virus. The virus causes a disease termed myxomatosis to the rabbits, ultimately leading to their deaths.
    Please read on various agricultural terms and meanings here.

Note: Any new method to be implemented in the biological control of pest must be carefully analysed and considered before they are released into the environment. This is done to prevent an attack on useful and other harmless organisms within the environment.

Please read on the economic importance of crop pests here.

3. Chemical Control

Chemical control of pest involves the use of toxic substances (chemicals) to eliminate pest within an environment. Such toxic substances or chemicals are generally referred to as pesticides. These pesticides can take different forms; that is; they can exist in liquid, powdered, granular or gaseous forms respectively.

Please read on agricultural pest and crops attacked here.

In summary, chemical control of pest involves the use of:

  • Pesticides: A chemical generally used to kill pests.
  • Insecticides: A chemical that kills insect.
  • Fungicides: A chemical that kills fungi.
  • Avicides: A chemical used for killing birds.
  • Rodenticides: A chemical used for killing rodents.
  • Nematicides: A chemical that kills nematode.

4. Cultural Control

Cultural control of pest is a method that requires the application of various farm practices to control pest. The application of these farm practices functions to interrupt the life cycle of the pest; thus significantly decreasing their proliferation on agricultural land.

You can read on agricultural land and its uses here.

The various farm practices that interrupts the life cycle of pests include:

  • Crop rotation
  • Bush fallowing
  • Regular weeding
  • Use of disease resistant seeds
  • Strategic planting dates
  • Timely harvesting

Please read on the differences between plants and crops here.

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Amazing facts in Agricultural Science

Cows technically have one stomach, not four. However, a cow's stomach has four compartments. These are: rumen, reticulum, omasum and abomasum

Peanuts are legumes and not nuts

Although plants neither see nor hear, they can recognize their siblings and even give them preferential treatments

Squirrels do plant more trees (through their actions) than an average human in their lifetime. They often hide their acorns and nuts underground and forget about them

Cows have got the ability to walk up stairs, but not down stairs

A group of cows is called a team, drove or herd.

People just prefer to call them herd

Notable points in Agricultural Science

Below are characteristics of gymnosperms:

  1. Their seeds have cones that protect them.

  2. Sepals and petals aren't present in their cones.

  3. Stigma and style are absent.

  4. They do not produce fruits. Only seeds are formed.

  5. Companion cells are absent.

  6. Sporophyll form the cones.

  7. Anther and filament are absent.

  8. The ovules are not present in the ovary.

  9. Gymnosperms do not possess flowers.

  10. Please read on the anatomical differences between gymnosperms and angiosperms here

The flower is the reproductive organ in plants' sexual reproduction. In order to achieve a successful sexual propagation or reproduction in plants, the floral parts of the flower are utilized.

The floral parts of a flower consists of the followings:

  1. Sepals

  2. Petals

  3. Stamen

  4. Carpel

The stamen is male portion of a plant. It consists of the anther and filament.

The carpel (or pistil) is the female portion of the plant. It consists of the stigma, style and ovary.

Please read more on plants' sexual reproduction here

An organism will be considered a pest if it does one of the followings:

  • Attack crops and eat its seeds, roots, stem, leaves and flowers. Examples are locust and grasshoppers.

  • Cause damage to stored food, fruits or other agricultural produce. Some may even urinate or deaficate on these products. Examples are rodents, cockroaches and mice.

  • Attack and kill farm animals like goats, sheep and cattle. Examples are foxes, wild cats and snakes.

  • Act as disease vectors. A vector is an organism that carries parasite and other disease causing organisms, without being affected; but when they introduce the parasites into their host, such host becomes infected with disease. Examples of vectors are rodents and mosquitoes.

    Please read more on vectors of diseases here.

Below are the classification of crops based on their uses:

  • Oil crops

  • Vegetable crops

  • Latex crops

  • Drug and Medicinal crops

  • Beverage crops

  • Fibre crops

  • Fruit crops

  • Root and Tubers

  • Legumes

  • Spices

  • Cereals

All crops are plants but not all plants are crops. Below are some instances:

  • Weeds are considered as plants, not crops.

  • Parasitic plants are not necessarily crops. Examples of parasitic plants include mistletoe, corpse flower and striga.

  • Carnivorous or insectivorous plants are not necessarily crops. Examples are sundew, venus flytrap and pitcher plant. The image below shows a carnivorous plant (venus flytrap).

Venus flytrap - Len Academy


Meanwhile, always understand that all crops are plants, and they are grown for food, money or something beneficial.

Please read on plants versus crops here