|Title||Cotton in Benin: governance and pest management|
|Source||Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Arnold van Huis; D.K. Kossou; S.D. Vodouhe, co-promotor(en): Rein Haagsma. - Wageningen : Wageningen UR - ISBN 9789461738073 - 201|
Laboratory of Entomology
|Publication type||Dissertation, internally prepared|
|Keyword(s)||gossypium hirsutum - katoen - plagen - gewasproductie - gewasbescherming - biologische bestrijding - neemextracten - beauveria bassiana - bacillus thuringiensis - veldproeven - participatie - boeren - plagenbestrijding - plagenbehandeling - geïntegreerde plagenbestrijding - benin - gossypium hirsutum - cotton - pests - crop production - plant protection - biological control - neem extracts - beauveria bassiana - bacillus thuringiensis - field tests - participation - farmers - pest control - pest management - integrated pest management - benin|
|Categories||Integrated Control, Integrated Pest Management|
Key words: cotton, synthetic pesticides, neem oil (Azadirachta indica), Beauveria bassiana,
Bacillus thuringiensis, field experiment, farmers’ participation
Pests are one of the main factors limiting cotton production worldwide. Most of the pest
control strategies in cotton production rely heavily on the application of synthetic pesticides.
The recurrent use of synthetic pesticides has large consequences for the environment (air,
water, fauna, and flora) and human health. In cotton growing areas in Benin, targeted pests
develop resistance, and this resistance is extended to malaria mosquitos. Other negative
impacts are pest resurgence and secondary pest outbreaks due to the effects on the beneficial
insect fauna. This dissertation addresses the technical and institutional constraints hindering
the wide-scale use of staggered targeted control, ‘Lutte étagée ciblée’ (LEC, in French) for
Wider adoption of LEC can only be achieved if some institutional changes were to
occur, such as in the role of input suppliers in order to improve the procurement of LEC
pesticides. This can only happen if farmers would be empowered and better organised.
Locally available phytochemicals and biopesticides can be used to address problems related to
the difficulty in obtaining synthetic pesticides, as well as their negative environmental impact.
Neem oil (Azadirachta indica) and Beauveria bassiana are good candidates to be used in an
integrated pest management approach, as their impact on the beneficial fauna is minimal. We
tested whether the efficacy could be enhanced by using mixed formulations of neem oil and
bio-insecticides, but yields obtained with neem oil used alone and mixed with biopesticides
were not different. This suggests an absence of a synergistic effect between neem oil and B.
bassiana (Bb11) and between neem oil and B. thuringiensis. The combination of biopesticides
increased the cost of production more than that of the conventional treatments, compromising
the profitability of such formulations. Participation in the research process increased farmers’
knowledge on pest and natural enemy recognition. The increase in knowledge did not lead to
any modification in farmer practices with respect to the use of neem oil and Beauveria, but it
led to a significant change towards threshold-based pesticide applications. Policy implications
for successfully changing farming practices are discussed.