Blake Newton, UK Extension Entomologist
Farmers have to really know and understand insects in order to grow their crops. It's very simple: you can't control an insect pest if you don't understand its life-cycle, or if you can't identify it. This goes double for organic farmers. Whenever I've visited an organic farm, entomology is always happening. Instead of relying on chemical pesticides, organic farmers have to hand-pick many of the insect pests that infest their crops. And by doing so, they also get a close look at many of the beneficial insects and other non-pests that inhabit their crops. These folks are often experts in insect identification, and they are also familiar with all of the different life stages that are encountered throughout the season.
I was reminded of all of this a couple of days ago when I read this post from the Elmwood Stock Farm in Georgetown, KY. Take a look and see how important insects are to Kentucky farmers!