CHASING THE DREAM: A SYSTEMS MODELLING APPROACH TO BIOLOGICAL CONTROL
Sustainable production with reduced reliance on pesticides places some big demands on the effectiveness of biological control of pest and disease problems within horticultural production systems. There is currently a need to integrate and synthesise knowledge from all aspects of the production system to determine the most effective strategies for biological control of pests and disease. For this a systems-based modelling approach is appropriate, due to the inclusive nature of this approach and its focus on understanding processes and their interactions. The development of a systems approach for biological control in horticulture is incredibly daunting due to the huge diversity of crops, pests, natural enemies and production practices in horti¬culture. New and up-and-coming sensor and production technologies combined with new modelling approaches have however, great potential to either simplify the system to a manageable level or provide a common framework for modelling that will greatly enhance the ability to take a systems approach to coping with reduced pesticides. Current models are primarily oriented towards enhancing the understanding of a system and its processes, however, often with limited focus on producing practically useful outcomes. For the future, there will be a need to translate research models into practically useful tools, through the simplification of the research models, so that there is rapid transfer of knowledge and understanding from researchers to growers.
Skirvin, D.J. (2011). CHASING THE DREAM: A SYSTEMS MODELLING APPROACH TO BIOLOGICAL CONTROL . Acta Hortic. 916, 129-139
horticulture, reduced pesticides, technology