Presentation on theme: "Agricultural Entomology. What is Agriculture? The cultivation of plants/animals for Human Use Includes plants used for : Food (Fruits, vegetables, grains."— Presentation transcript:
What is Agriculture? The cultivation of plants/animals for Human Use Includes plants used for : Food (Fruits, vegetables, grains and oil seeds) Animal Feed Fiber products (like wood or cotton)
Tarrant Co. Agriculture Factoids In 1997, There were 1048 farms covering 184,081 acres of land. These farms produce over $40 Million worth of ag. Products each year. Major Tarrant Co. Crops include: Seed Corn Sorghum Wheat Grass and alfalfa hay
What Role Do Insects Play in Agriculture? Harmful insects: Eat parts of plant, causing weakened growth and production Eat parts of plant that we eat, spoiling crop Spread diseases that weaken or kill the plant
Beneficial Insects: Eat or parasitize harmful insects, keeping their populations in check. Pollinate Produce Marketable Products (honey, wax, silk)
One Plant, Many Pests Apple Trees: Plum Curculio – Fruit Damage
How Do Farmers Deal With Pest Insects? Chemical Control Biological Control Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Chemical Control Pesticides: Synthetic or Natural Chemicals used to interrupt the normal physiological processes of insects. Timing is important! Some applications may make the problem worse in the long run. Some pesticides can harm people, too!
BioControl Natural Enemies: Insects that prey upon or parasitize pest insects, keeping their populations at a minimal level Pheromone Trapping: using chemical signals to trap adults before they can lay eggs Bt transgenic plants – are toxic to Lepidopteran pests.
Natural Enemies Come in 2 categories: Generalists – eat a variety of pest and beneficial species. Specialists – Have specific prey or hosts.
Frequently Released Generalists Green Lacewings
Frequently Released Generalists Ladybird Beetles
Transgenic Crops Bacillus thuringiensis genes inserted into genome of many different crops. B. thuringiensis is a naturally occuring bacteria that produces a protein that is lethal to Lepidoptera. Bt Plants produce their own pesticide, and aren’t harmful to people. Selection for plants that don’t produce the protein in their pollen reduces the risk to non-target species.