The Texas Integrated Pest Management Program will deliver sustainable, credible, reliable, and timely solutions to pest problems. The program will continue to educate farmers, ranchers and urban Texans about the benefits of the pest management program and how to access and safely use the IPM concepts to address pest problems in an environmentally friendly manner.
Texas IPM programs are conducted as a public/private partnership and cooperative effort between TPMA and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. IPM units are located in key cropping regions of the state and address a wide range of pest problems across major agricultural crops.
The Texas IPM program is the only one of its kind in the United States where growers and government work hand-in-hand in a private/public partnership to protect the economic viability of the state's agricultural sector while helping to maintain a clean, healthy environment for all Texans.
The Texas IPM program:
TPMA represents over 2,500 growers of cotton, grain sorghum, wheat, peanuts, citrus, vegetables, corn, alfalfa, soybeans and sunflowers. The organization also cooperates with 12 commodity organizations and maintains 22 integrated pest management units throughout the state. The information developed by the IPM program reaches over 8,500 growers, and acreage in the counties covered by this information dissemination is approximately 10,125,000.
Over 18 million pieces of data on nearly one million acres of crops are collected each year to form the IPM database. Information on pest abundance, distribution and damage, levels of natural enemies, weather conditions, and soil fertility levels is critical to producer members. The organization shares its IPM database with fellow farm growers and agribusiness, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Texas A&M AgriLife Research, TDA, the USDA and other states.
Visit the sites below to learn more about various IPM programs and organizations.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) was launched in Texas in 1972 by scientists seeking effective and environmentally friendly ways to control pests that damaged agricultural crops and livestock. TPMA serves Texas agriculture by promoting IPM principles through education and demonstration. As an undisputed leader in advancing IPM technologies, the organization seeks to demonstrate the economic and environmental benefits of addressing pest management issues with proven science.
Since 1972, the Texas IPM Program has made significant progress in helping to solve agricultural pest problems within the state. Pest management methods developed through the program are both affordable and environmentally responsible. Widespread IPM implementation in Texas has resulted in an overall reduction in pesticide use in many crops,
The Integrated Pest Management (IPM) concept is simply to utilize a sustainable approach to manage agricultural and urban pests by combining the use of all practical methods of pest control including biological, cultural, physical and chemical methods, in a manner that attains the clients' goals while minimizing economic, health and environmental risks.
Under agricultural IPM program guides, farm fields are scouted on a frequent basis during the growing season. Data obtained includes crop stage, levels of pest populations, as well as beneficial insect numbers. The data is compared to established pest thresholds. Pesticide applications are made only when pest numbers exceed those economic thresholds. The result is that pesticides are used only if needed. IPM is not a single pest control method but, rather, a series of pest management evaluations, decisions and controls.
IPM, or Integrated Pest Management, is a strategy of managing pests that is designed to meet an individual's production goals in the most economically and environmentally sound manner possible using a combination of control tactics.
IPM is a systematic, information-intensive approach which depends upon an understanding of the entire production system. It strives to use several complimentary tactics or control methods to manage pests which makes the system more stable and subject to less production risks. IPM focuses on tactics that will prevent or avoid anticipated pest problems rather than remediate problems once they have occurred.
Implementation of IPM requires on-going education about maintaining the delicate balance between harmful and beneficial pests. It further requires the use of the proper tools at the proper time to ensure that pesticides are not used prior to the need to maintain pest population levels below an acceptable economic threshold.
The tactics or methods used in IPM include one or a combination of the following:
The National Institute for Food and Agriculture lists the following as key benefits to incorporating IPM technology into crop management plans:
To Agricultural Producers:
To the Environment:
To Pest Management Professionals and Organizations:
To the General Public:
Urban dwellers can reap the benefits of managing pests with the use of IPM principles as IPM concepts are not only applicable in agricultural settings but within the state's urban areas. The methodology that has been successful in Texas agriculture is now being put to use in urban settings, residential subdivisions, parks and recreational areas, public access areas, industry, and in public schools.
The Texas IPM Program focuses on educating people on the least-toxic approaches to lawn care, with the ultimate goal of reducing the amount of landscape chemicals that seep into waterways and degrade water quality. The IPM concept can be as simple as taking time to read and follow the label instructions for applying lawn and garden chemicals.
When trying to control pests, schools must take extra steps to keep from harming children as well. The Southwestern Technical Resource Center for IPM in Schools and Daycare Centers is dedicated to keeping schools clean and safe for children.
The Texas Legislature passed a law in the early 1990's requiring that IPM practices be used to manage pests in and around school facilities. The idea to incorporate the principles of IPM in school settings has been endorsed my the state's major environmental organizations and the Texas Pest Management Association.