Pest Management

Storage, handling, timing and method of application of biological based approaches to pest management can be critical in ensuring efficacy of the product. Here you will find a selection of resources that will support you in maximising the impact of these agents in your production system.

What is Integrated Pest Management?

Bioprotection or biocontrol can be used within an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programme/approach. Integrated Pest Management can be defined as:

“an holistic approach to management of a pest by all available means, including the judicious use of chemical pesticides.”

A more precise definition and the principles of IPM can be found on the EU Sustainable Use of Pesticides webpage.

Why use biocontrol?

There are a number of very good reasons to use biopesticides and biological controls:

  • They are natural and have minimal environmental impact, plus they leave little or no toxic residues so we get cleaner and safer food.
  • They can introduce different modes of action to their chemical counterparts, reducing the selection pressure for pesticide resistance.
  • Many have zero or very low pre-harvest and re-entry intervals
  • Many products are highly specific to the target pest.
  • And many are perfectly compatible with standard spray equipment.

Examples include:

  • Nemaflor® (e-nema) which contains tiny worm-like nematodes that infect and kill pests such as thrips and leaf miners; and
  • Trianum-G (Koppert Biological Systems) which contains a fungus that grows along the roots of plants and protects them from incoming disease

A good example of how biocontrol or bioprotection fits within an overall IPM strategy can be seen here: IPM Pyramid

Illustrations of how these components can be put together for specific crops can be seen in these panels from IBMA: IPM in practice

What is monitoring and scouting?

A quick guide to effective crop monitoring is provided in this short video from the UK’s AHDB:

How do you apply bioprotection agents?


Application of bioprotection agents and the correct dosage are important for their effective use. This is addressed in the following videos for the fungal bioprotection agent Metarhizium.


EPN application  in fruit trees

A useful guide to combination of EPNs with chemical pesticides can be found on the e-nema web site.

Similarly, the Biobest Side Effect Manual is a useful tool to ensure maximum efficacy of your bioprotection product.

Safe use and storage

Unlike conventional crop protection agents biological materials can require more care, particularly in regard to aspects of storage such as ambient temperature and shelf-life. The following video highlights some of these issues for the biocontrol agent Metarhizium:

As for conventional pesticides care of personal hygiene and safety still needs to be considered. This video highlights the need for PPE in the use of the fungal biocontrol agent Metarhizium:

Other Resources

Learn biocontrol online

The CABI Academy is an online learning platform for users around the globe. Our courses turn the latest research and innovations into practical, action-based resources and learning activities.We partner with world-leading universities, research organisations, and businesses to ensure the learnings from our courses are the most up-to-date and applicable to real life.


Using natural pest control on your coffee crops – what are the benefits and how do you do it? Our guide takes you through the steps from start to finish to help you start using safer pest control.

Pest Identification

Knowing the identity of your problem pest is critical to sourcing an effective means of managing the pest. Here we provide guidance and tools to help pest identification, and also potentially develop your diagnostic skills.

Types of biocontrol agents

A better understanding of the range of biocontrol agents and the way in which they interact with the target pest can help in the selection of a suitable agent for your production system, but also provide insight into how they can be more effectively used. Here we provide additional information and resources to provide more information on these novel approaches.

Definition of biocontrol

A more sustainable approach to the management of agricultural and environmental pests is the use of biological control (or biocontrol). Here we briefly explain the definition of biocontrol and the different types of biocontrol methods for managing pest problems.