Abundant natural enemies in tropical Asian irrigated rice usually prevent significant insect pest problems. Integrated pest management (IPM) extension education of depth and quality is required to discourage unnecessary insecticide use that upsets this natural balance, and to empower farmers as expert managers of a healthy paddy ecosystem. Farmers' skill and collaboration will be particularly important for sustainable exploitation of the potential of new, higher-yielding and pestresistant rices. IPM “technology transfer” through training and visit (T&V) extension systems failed, although mass media campaigns encouraging farmer participatory research can reduce insecticide use. The “farmer first” approach of participatory nonformal education in farmer field schools, followed by community IPM activities emphasizing farmer-training-farmer and research by farmers, has had greater success in achieving IPM implementation. Extension challenges are a key topic for rice IPM research, and new pest management technology must promote, rather than endanger, ecological balance in rice paddies.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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