Pest control practices of farmers in Taiwan and implications for non-target wildlife.

OSF Preprints
Ian Nicholas BestKurtis Jai-Chyi Pei

Abstract

Abstract Pests cause devastating losses on agricultural industries worldwide. Common pest management practices include using chemical products. The efficacy of these toxins remains inconclusive, however, and their application can have adverse effects on non-target wildlife from both direct and indirect exposure. In parts of Taiwan, threatened species may be at considerable risk since they inhabit areas with agricultural activity. Therefore, in this exploratory study, we surveyed farmers using a structured questionnaire in Miaoli County, northwestern Taiwan, in agricultural areas that overlap with the distribution of the locally endangered leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis), whose diet comprises a high proportion of rodents. Based on the completed questionnaires of 126 farmers, the majority stated they use at least two different types of chemical pest control products. Furthermore, pest-related factors, such as perceived worst pest, total pest problem, and number of pests, were all important determinants for pest control behavior. Farmers whose crops were afflicted by rodents were more likely to use rodenticides in addition to other types of pesticides. These agricultural areas, which include vegetable cropland, pose a risk ...Continue Reading

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