How to Manage Pests

UC Pest Management Guidelines


Biological Control

(Reviewed 12/09, updated 12/09)

In this Guideline:

Cucurbits are relatively fast-growing, annual crops; consequently, beneficial insects and mites may not have adequate time to develop high populations in the early stages of crop development. If natural enemies are to provide control in cucurbits, they must either come from adjacent crops (alfalfa, orchards, etc.), noncultivated areas, or be released throughout the cucurbit field. Be aware, however, that control by natural enemies is not always adequate to prevent economic losses and it may be difficult to establish populations of introduced beneficials. For example, if lady beetles are released, they generally fly away before significant feeding occurs, but naturally occurring populations can sometimes effectively control insects such as aphids.


[UC Peer Reviewed]

UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Cucurbits
UC ANR Publication 3445

General Information

  • E. T. Natwick, UC Cooperative Extension, Imperial County
  • J. J. Stapleton, UC IPM Program, Kearney Agricultultural Center, Parlier
  • C. S. Stoddard, UC Cooperative Extension, Merced & Madera counties

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Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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