Important Terms used in Biological Control of Crop Pests – III

Important Terms used in Biological Control of Crop Pests – III

Ecological Niche:

The place an organism occupies in its biotic relationships and physical environment as determined by its particular structural adaptations, physiological adjustments, and developed behavioral patterns.

Economic Threshold:

A population density concept which allows the determination of the point at which pest numbers are sufficient to cause economic injury unless suppressive action is taken.


An insect parasite which develops externally on its arthropod host.


An insect parasite which develops within the arthropods host.


An toxin substance formed by certain bacteria and retained within their vegetative cells (e.g. in Bacillus thuringiensis, the endotoxin occurs as  a part of the crystal shaped parasporal body).


Refers to organisms (usually micro organisms) growing in or on the bodies of insects.


Capable of causing disease in insects.


Refers to the consumption of insects or their parts, insectivorous.




Refers to a disease condition (or sometimes a pest) which is constantly present in an area, but at a low rate of incidence.


An outbreak of a disease (or sometime a pest) in which is an unusually high number of cases (or density of the pest).


A soluble toxic substance produced by certain bacteria and found in their surrounding growth medium.

Factitious Host:

An unnatural but acceptable host used in laboratory propagation of beneficial organisms.

Facultative Parasitism:

Here in reference to nematodes which may either parasitize healthy insect, or develop in some other way in the environment (e.g. mycetophagy) if no insect host is encountered.

Facultative Pathogen:

A micro organism which is capable of growth and reproduction in either a non living medium or living host; in the latter instance, a disease condition of the host may arise.

Fortuitous Biological Insect Pest Suppression:

The desirable but accidental movement of exotic beneficial organisms to new areas and/or new pests, where pest population suppression eventually results; or the successful population regulation of exotic pests by indigenous natural enemies.

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