The agricultural production in the Neotropical region is highly affected by the attack of pests and diseases. Due to the overuse of pesticides, sustainable methods of control are in demand, such as biological control. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) considered the use of Biological control as a method to suppress the population of pests in several field agricultural systems and in protected crops systems. Biological control is generally appreciated today as an important component of IPM, and the demand for it is likely to spread as the IPM programs develop worldwide. The tropics present an important region for the application of biological control. The Neotropical region is characterized by its rich biodiversity, resulting in a wide range of natural enemies of pests represented by parasitoids, predators, and pathogens. Parasitoids are the natural enemies most used around the world for biological control. In this chapter, we present biological control programs using parasitoids established in the Neotropical region to control key pests of economic importance. Agricultural practices that maintain and enhance the action of natural enemies in crops will be reviewed, as the challenges and potential for the establishment of Biological Control programs using parasitoids in the Neotropical region.
Part of the book: Horticultural Crops