Integrated Pest Management (IPM) has been around since the 1970s, but many consumers and businesses are just beginning to take notice of this practice. In contrast to fumigation, IPM tries to limit the use of chemicals; instead, it encourages the use of less toxic pest control methods.

What is Integrated Pest Management? 

According to the CDC, IPM offers pest control solutions that are environmentally friendly and based on common sense. Unlike more traditional pest control methods, IPM limits the use of harmful pesticides. Instead, it combines multiple strategies to achieve its goals. In this article, we are breaking what Integrated Pest Management is and how a Cryonite machine can be a valuable addition.

Why IPM Might Be Necessary

IPM is gaining in popularity as ecological issues become more of a concern. Pesticides may be effective at eliminating pests, but their toxic chemicals can cause untold damage. Those toxins can have harmful effects on other organisms inhabiting the same ecosystem, including animals, crops, and beneficial insects. 

In the past, crops were fumigated for pests and no one questioned the practice. Now, eco-conscious consumers are choosing environmentally friendly products for their pest control solutions. In return, companies are realizing that they need to provide those products and to become better stewards for our environment. This has led to the increasing popularity of IPM. 

IPM aims to minimize the potential hazards associated with traditional pest control by seeking alternative, less harmful solutions. 

Five Key Elements of IPM 

IPM is a multi-faceted strategy that focuses on five key elements for success:  

1. Prevention

The first line of defense for any IPM is prevention. By actively working on ways to avoid pest infestations taking hold, IPM can eliminate the need for harsher methods of pest elimination.

Some of the more common forms of outdoors pest prevention include:  Rotating crops, growing pest-resistant varieties of vegetation, and mowing/pruning as necessary.

For indoor spaces, prevention could include caulking doors and windows and keeping vegetation at a greater distance from entry points. 

2. Accurate Identification

Accurately identifying pests is crucial for successful IPM. Knowing which kind of pest you are dealing with will help you to determine the most effective extermination methods. Additionally, accurate identification will avoid the unnecessary and potentially damaging elimination of beneficial organisms. 

3. Monitoring the Situation

Pest control is not a one-time solution; it is an ongoing process. For an IPM to be successful, it must consistently monitor pest populations for growth. It is the only way to be certain of a change in the levels of pests that are present in a given environment. Through adequate monitoring, it will become evident if a situation occurs that requires additional intervention. 

4. Setting Thresholds

The presence of a single pest does not always equal the need for pest control. Depending on the location, types of pests, and possible consequences, different thresholds may be acceptable.

However, when it comes to sensitive crops and highly invasive insects, the presence of even a few pests can signal the need for immediate action.

5. Taking Action

Finally, when pest thresholds have been exceeded, it is time for IPM to spring into action. IPM favors the use of non-toxic solutions. Depending on the pests that are present, the immediate environment that will be affected, and other organisms that share the ecosystem, different techniques may be utilized.

Less hazardous solutions include trapping, using heat or cold systems, and weeding or pruning. If these solutions are not effective, chemical usage may be considered. 

How Does Cryonite Fit Together with IPM Practices? 

Cryonite is a highly effective, yet non-toxic pest elimination machine that can be a valuable addition to an overall IPM solution. A Cryonite machine kills pests on contact without the use of any chemicals. It leaves no residue and is safe to use on any surface (even on electronics). 

Cryonite machines use a patented nozzle to transform liquid carbon dioxide into dry ice at -110° Fahrenheit. The machine then sprays a stream of dry ice, instantly freezing pests. Cryonite can work with other IPM strategies including vacuuming and trapping and even alongside pesticides, if needed. 

Because Cryonite works without chemicals, areas can be treated as often as necessary without any wait times or potential harm to the environment or beneficial organisms. If you would like to learn more about Cryonite and the ways that it can form an integral part of your IPM, please contact us.

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