Experts guide farmers about pest control at Liwa Date Festival

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Experts guide farmers about pest control at Liwa Date Festival
The right technique is important in pest management.

Abu Dhabi - Abu Dhabi Farmers' Services Centre's IPM programme has steadily evolved since it was first introduced three years ago.

By Staff Reporter

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Published: Wed 29 Jul 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Wed 29 Jul 2015, 8:56 AM

Visitors to the Abu Dhabi Farmers' Services Centre booth at the Liwa Date Festival have the opportunity to speak to date palm experts and learn about the centre's holistic approach to controlling pests.
Ahmed Al Suwaidi, ADFSC Communications Section Manager, believes it is important to have the right technique when it comes to pest management. "Integrated pest management is a combination of techniques to control and manage insects, viruses, bacteria, and any harmful organisms in a sustainable manner in tandem with proper fertiliser and irrigation methods."
Over 21,000 farmers have benefited from the programme.
Abu Dhabi Farmers' Services Centre's IPM programme has steadily evolved since it was first introduced three years ago.
The programme, was first introduced primarily to tackle the red palm weevil; however, it has grown to become more holistic and includes sciences of pest management and farm management, where greater focus is placed on the types and timings of agricultural inputs and processes such as fertilizer, soil conditioner, pollination, pruning and pest management control.
The programme attributes some of its success to a combination of pheromone and light traps placed at farms around the Emirate.
Light traps are used to reduce the spread of the fruit stalk and stem borer, whilst the pheromone trap is distributed to attract the red palm Proper installation of light traps installed can help reduce the numbers of pests before they infect the date palms.
Abu Dhabi Farmers' Services Centre also distributed around 11 million date nets this year, which protect the fruit from pests and allow the fruit to ripen until it can be harvested. The IPM programme is developed by ADFSC's technical development section and is delivered by the centre's technical projects section. Dr. Alaa Joma, director, ADFSC technical service division said: "Pruning prevents pests from entering the base and stem of the date palm trees. Mechanical pollination delivers more viable date palm pollen, more efficiently resulting in a higher yield, better quality, and greater return for the farmer."
Technical staff and ADFSC Extension Engineers are on site to answer questions and give practical technical advice on date palm care, irrigation, pest management, pollination and more.
reporters@khaleejtimes.com



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