Classical biological control is the dominant form of biological control, being suitable for use on thousands to millions of acres of land and is a critical tool in controlling the ecological and economic damage caused by invasive pests. It is a government-supported activity for the public good and is based in ecology and population dynamics. It has an excellent, but not perfect, safety record, and methods exist for predicting risks to native species, allowing them to be minimized by choice of agents released. Augmentative biological control, in contrast, is a commercial activity with a narrow scope. It is suitable for providing crop protection for limited periods of time. Its costs recur with each crop and must be paid by the end user. The range of natural enemies reared commercially is a small subset of those that occur naturally, being limited by economics of production and market size, such that only species that generate profits can be offered for sale. Both methods improve human and ecological health by replacing pesticide use.
See also: Invasive Species. Further Reading
Bellows TS and Fisher TW (eds.) (1999) Handbook of Biological Control: Principles and Applications of Biological Control. San Diego: Academic Press.
Clausen CP (ed.) (1978) Agricultural Research Service: Handbook No. 480: Introduced Parasites and Predators of Arthropod Pests and Weeds: A World Review. Washington, DC: USDA: Agricultural Research Service. DeBach Pand Rosen D (1991) Biological Control by Natural Enemies. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Follett PA and Duan JJ (eds.) (2000) Nontarget Effects of Biological
Control. Boston, MA: Kluwer Academic. Jervis M and Kidd N (eds.) (1996) Insect Natural Enemies: Practical Approaches to their Study and Evaluation. London: Chapman and Hall.
Julien MH and Griffiths MW (eds.) (1998) Biological Control of Weeds, a World Catalogue of Agents and their Target Weeds, 4th edn. Wallingford: CABI Publishing. Van Driesche J and Van Driesche RG (2000) Nature Out of Place: Biological Invasions in a Global Age. Washington, DC: Island Press.
Van Driesche RG, Hoddle M, and Center T (2008) Control of Pests and Weeds by Natural Enemies, an Introduction to Biological Control. London: Blackwell.
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