Automatic Detection and Monitoring of Pests

With the advent of heavy rainfall, the world of insects beneath our feet-that had been lying dormant-have the right conditions to emerge. A damp environment provides the perfect breeding conditions for many insects and increases the likelihood of pest infestations.


In the agricultural monarchy, detecting pests and crop diseases is strenuous. Traditional pest management methods include regular spray programs based on schedules rather than the presence of pests in the fields, which are difficult, time-consuming, and prone to human error. With ongoing research, several systems have been designed to improve integrated pest management (IPM), reducing the overall use of pesticides and focusing on more precise applications.


Automated trapping devices are equipped with sensors for field data collection and hardware and software components for the transmission of the data to a remote server to store and/or process the information in databases.

 

How does it work?

  1. Real-time data is gathered from the field - The insect camera traps automatically collect daily catch counts. Identifies pest species and measures local environmental parameters.

  2. Data is analysed and sent to the cloud - Pictures are sent to the servers which detect species and catch counting is performed by algorithms. This evaluates population density and measures the severity of the infestation.

  3. Feedback is provided - Farmers receive ideal defence strategies and timings to maximise efficiency.

Automated pest monitoring systems scan several kinds of insects. and can be lured into insect traps to provide an effortless pest monitoring system with limited resources. There exist several types of insect traps and are used based on species:


Pheromone Traps: Uses chemicals to lure insects. Pheromones are used to communicate with each other. attract mates, warn others of predators, or find food. Using specific pheromones, traps can be used to monitor target pests.


Sticky Traps: Insects are immobilised in the glue and die. Different coloured traps, such as yellow and blue, may attract different species given differences in colour sensitivity of eye photo-receptors. For example, Yellow sticky traps are used for monitoring & mass trapping of soft-body insects like aphid and white flies etc. and blue traps are mainly used for thrips.


Bait Traps: rely on olfaction (sense of smell) for attraction. For example, Sorghum shoot fly is attracted to rotten meat.


An automated insect pest identification and environmental monitoring system can be used for continuous and precise monitoring of insect populations and activity. With the simultaneous measurement of the environmental conditions, it is possible to further investigate insect behaviour that can be affected by environmental factors such as temperature, relative humidity, and light intensity. 


Benefits of Automated Insect Pest Monitoring System:

. Early Detection

. More Sustainable Option

. Increased Pesticide Efficiency

. Crop Damage Prevention and Reduction

. Crop Quality Improvement 



References:

  • Lima, Matheus & Leandro, Maria Elisa & Pereira, Luis & Valero, Constantino & Gonçalves Bazzo, Clara. (2020). Automatic Detection and Monitoring of Insect Pests-A Review. Agriculture. 10(5). 10.3390/agriculture10050161

  • Preti, M., Verheggen, F. & Angeli, S. Insect pest monitoring with camera-equipped traps: strengths and limitations. J Pest Sci 94, 203–217 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10340-020-01309-4

  • Sciarretta, Andrea & Calabrese, Pasquale. (2019). Development of Automated Devices for the Monitoring of Insect Pests. Current Agriculture Research Journal. 7. 2019. 10.12944/CARJ.7.1.03


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