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Impacts of Synthetic and Botanical Pesticides on Beneficial Insects

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DOI: 10.4236/as.2016.76038    2,003 Downloads   2,996 Views Citations


Sustainable methods to control insect pests that affect crop yield have become a great challenge to mainly smallholder farmers. Beneficial insects in agricultural fields play an important role in natural pest control and pollination. The use of synthetic and botanical pesticides has detrimental effects to both natural enemies and pollinators in agricultural fields. The pesticides affect the survival of a range of life cycle stages, reductions in reproductive capacity, changes in the suitability of hosts for parasitising or predation, reduced emergence of parasitoids from sprayed host eggs and cause direct mortality. This has caused a serious menace to biological control agents and pollinators. When natural enemies are reduced, even more serious consequences may result for pest population dynamics which include the phenomena of resurgence and eruption of secondary pests. The decrease in pollinators reduces agricultural productivity. This review aims at exploring the side effects of synthetic and botanical pesticides on beneficial insects to give the basis for research on the negative impacts of synthetic and botanical pesticides on these insects. This information will assist in optimizing the use of pesticides in integrated pest management programmes by employing more sustainable and ecosystem benign practices such as the use of right dosage and selective pesticides in agricultural fields.

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Ndakidemi, B. , Mtei, K. and Ndakidemi, P. (2016) Impacts of Synthetic and Botanical Pesticides on Beneficial Insects. Agricultural Sciences, 7, 364-372. doi: 10.4236/as.2016.76038.

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