Role of modeling in insect pest and disease management
Pradeep Kumar Dalal and Jaywant Kumar Singh
Successful integrated pest management (IPM) control programmes depend on many factors which include host–parasitoid ratios, starting densities, timings of parasitoid releases, dosages and timings of insecticide applications and levels of host-feeding and parasitism. In devising strategies for the control of pest populations, pest management specialists have attempted to make use of mathematical theories of population dynamics to aid in their task. Manetsch and Park defined model as an abstract representation of a real-world system that behaves like the real-world system in certain respects. Modeling in pest management not only helps in forecasting of pest populations but it also give answers to problems like strategy selection, tactics selection and state selection. One such model is FRUTFLY, which has been successful in predicting the fruit fly emergence. Likewise, weather variables also play significant role in initiating the plant diseases. Extensive studies involving favourable weather variables with respect to wheat rust, bacterial blight of rice, etc. have helped researchers to anticipate the future plant disease problems.