Wildlife Damage Management, Internet Center for


Date of this Version

October 1981


Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a term that is widely used, but little understood. The Federal Interagency IPM Coordinating Committee adopted the description of IPM as "a systems approach to reduce pest damage to tolerable levels through a variety of techniques, including predators and parasites, genetically resistant hosts, natural environmental modifications and, when necessary and appropriate, chemical pesticides." Essentially, the ultimate goal of IPM programs is to reduce pest populations to "tolerable levels". This may be a departure from more traditional approaches to pest control that advocated the elimination or eradication of pest populations. Another postulate of IPM is that any control measure undertaken against a pest population be economically justified . The "economic injury level (EIL)" needs to be identified for each pest within a total management system. There is the continuing need for both basic and applied research by interdisciplinary teams to fully implement and benefit from IPM programs.