The Weeds Biological Control Short Course has been run by the Centre for Biological Control since 2005. It introduces both the theory and practice of weed biological control. It familiarizes those new to science with the theory that underpins host specificity and thus the safety of biological control and provides an understanding of not only HOW but WHY it works.
In 1963, in her influential book “Silent Spring”, Rachel Carson warned the world of the environmental and human health dangers of pesticide use. Carson promoted the use of Biological Control as an alternative method for suppressing insect outbreaks and weed infestations. Despite this warning the global expenditure on pesticides has increased annually reaching some USD 50 billion for 2008. Biological Control, or the development of host specific natural enemies, offers the most effective and long-term solution to many invasive alien plant species and insect pests. Whether you are a manager, implementation officer, concerned member of the public and/or a new student in Entomology, this course will help you to understand and apply the concepts of biological control within the context of South African ecosystems.
Weeds Short Course 2018 participants and lecturers (Photo: Kim Weaver)