In-field habitat management to optimize pest control of novel soil communities in agroecosystems

Kirsten A. Pearsons, John F. Tooker

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The challenge of managing agroecosystems on a landscape scale and the novel structure of soil communities in agroecosystems both provide reason to focus on in-field management practices, including cover crop adoption, reduced tillage, and judicial pesticide use, to promote soil community diversity. Belowground and epigeal arthropods, especially exotic generalist predators, play a significant role in controlling insect pests, weeds, and pathogens in agroecosystems. However, the preventative pest management tactics that dominate field-crop production in the United States do not promote biological control. In this review, we argue that by reducing disturbance, mitigating the effects of necessary field activities, and controlling pests within an Integrated Pest Management framework, farmers can facilitate the diversity and activity of native and exotic arthropod predators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number82
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Insect Science


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