Progress in Biological Control Series Preface

Biological control of pests, weeds, and plant and animal diseases utilising their natural antagonists is a well-established and rapidly evolving field of science. Despite its stunning successes world-wide and a steadily growing number of applications, biological control has remained grossly underexploited. Its untapped potential, however, represents the best hope to providing lasting, environmentally sound, and socially acceptable pest management. Such techniques are urgently needed for the control of an increasing number of problem pests affecting agriculture and forestry, and to suppress invasive organisms which threaten natural habitats and global biodiversity.

Based on the positive features of biological control, such as its target specificity and the lack of negative impacts on humans, it is the prime candidate in the search for reducing dependency on chemical pesticides. Replacement of chemical control by biological control - even partially as in many IPM programs - has important positive but so far neglected socio-economic, humanitarian, environmental and ethical implications. Change from chemical to biological control substantially contributes to the conservation of natural resources, and results in a considerable reduction of environmental pollution. It eliminates human exposure to toxic pesticides, improves sustainability of production systems, and enhances biodiversity. Public demand for finding solutions based on biological control is the main driving force in the increasing utilisation of natural enemies for controlling noxious organisms.

This book series is intended to accelerate these developments through exploring the progress made within the various aspects of biological control, and via documenting these advances to the benefit of fellow scientists, students, public officials, policymakers, and the public at large. Each of the books in this series is expected to provide a comprehensive, authoritative synthesis of the topic, likely to stand the test of time.

Heikki M.T. Hokkanen, Series Editor

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