Sustainable Pest Control for the Tropics

2001 Annual Report for EW00-026

Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2000: $78,090.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2003
Matching Non-Federal Funds: $81,200.00
Region: Western
State: Hawaii
Principal Investigator:
Richard Bowen
Department of Nat Res and Envir Mngt

Sustainable Pest Control for the Tropics


A Working Group will be formed with representation from CES, NRCS, educators from community colleges, individual farmers, farmer organizations, and researchers in Hawai`i and the Pacific Islands. The Working Group will develop modules to introduce successful pest control techniques that reduce or eliminate the use of chemical pesticides. Site-specific demonstrations will be held on 6-7 islands to display appropriate sustainable pest control methods for different cropping systems (vegetables, orchard crops, root crops). The extension materials, demonstration sites, and economic analyses will form the basis of a two-day training for agricultural professionals, to include a field component for pest assessment and control. Part of the training will be accessible to agricultural professionals in the U.S.-affiliated territories in the Western Pacific via an interactive video teleconference. The intensive training will be followed up by field days on each of the islands where demonstrations have been established. Products include the training events, extension materials (leaflets or a booklet), a video teleconference, and information developed by the project available on a website.

Objectives/Performance Targets

· To develop the capacity of University of Hawaii CES and Hawai`i NRCS personnel, and other agricultural professionals to understand and promote successful sustainable pest control methods for the tropics that reduce the use and dependency on toxic agricultural chemicals.

· To develop training for agency personnel and agricultural professionals in this topic area based on a participatory-learning model.

· To stimulate hands-on education events for farmers and other members of the agricultural community to be organized and led by those trained in sustainable pest control.

· To expand the scope of the sustainable pest control training module to reach personnel and agricultural professionals in the Pacific via an interactive video teleconference.


As we are in the early stages of the project, our progress relates primarily to the initial organization efforts.

WORKGROUP FORMATION: Step 1 of the project involves establishing the workgroup for the sustainable pest control grant. We have been in contact with all of the people originally involved in preparing the proposal and the majority have confirmed their participation. There have been some changes in the configuration of the workgroup as Dr. Marshall Johnson (UH Entomologist) has accepted employment elsewhere and Anne Emmsley (Associate Professor, Maui Community College) will be on sabbatical. We are searching for alternates.

Our networking efforts for this project have yielded good results at this point, as can be seen from the range of people who will plan to be involved in the project. The following ag professionals have agreed to participate:

· Dr. Janice Uchida, UH Plant Pathologist, will join the group as a trainer and resource person.
· Dr. Eileen O’Hora Weir, Director of HOFA (Hawaii Organic Farmers Association) has offered to work with us on the project and to possibly provide some trainers.
· All of the extension agents who expressed interest in the project have confirmed their participation.
· We have been in contact with professionals from the University of Guam, Northern Marianas College, American Samoa Community College, and the College of Micronesia. All have expressed interest in participating in the project and are in the process of designating the appropriate staff people.
· Dr. James Hollyer from the ADAP project (Agricultural Development for the American Pacific) will be participating.
· Dr. John McHugh, an private agricultural consultant (CropCare Hawaii) and a member of the Hawaii Farm Bureau Environmental Stewardship Committee will be joining the group.
· Dr. Ron Mau, IPM Program Director for Hawaii will assist the project and serve as a trainer (entomology).

We hope to get more involvement from other community colleges on neighbor islands as well.

As of this date, we tentatively have the following demonstration projects lining up for execution during the grant period. This list is tentative and subject to change.
· R. Ebesu, CES Extension Agent, Kauai: banana and thrips, coffee and fruit fly
· A. Arakaki, CES Extension Agent, Molokai: nematode control in sweet potato
· K. Arce, CES Extension Agent, Molokai: topic to be determined
· Dr. J. DeFrank, Weed Specialist, Oahu: use of piligrass for weed suppression in koa establishment
· Jeanne Vanna, Farmer, Oahu: use of covercrops for nematode control (to be finalized)
· Dr. J. McHugh, Oahu: weed suppression trials (morning glory, guinea grass, and spiny amaranth)
· Dr. K. Clark, Oahu: neem for pest control in organic vegetable production
· R. Shimabuku, Maui: sustainable techniques for controlling pink root on onions (compost tea)

As part of the requirements for the grant, we are attempting to have projects held on-farm (rather than at experiment stations) to further stimulate farmer participation. We are also trying to encourage CES and NRCS staff to team up together for setting up demonstration sites and field days. We are encouraging HOFA sponsor at least one of the demonstration sites as well.


We have been investigating the possibility of using our teleconferencing capacities at UH to better involve our partners in the Pacific Region. If feasible, we may hold some shorter introductory sessions via video teleconference (spring/summer 2002) on sustainable pest control techniques to build background understanding of the topics for the participants while making them feel more comfortable with the VTC technology. This should help improve information delivery and better prepare us for the Pacific Region Teleconference to be held later in the project in conjunction with the 2 day training event.

We have conducted a survey of CES Agents and NRCS Staff to assess their top information needs for sustainable pest control topics to help design the training to better meet their needs. We have received requests for training/information about:
· nematode control in general, specifically in sweet potato (Molokai)
· noxious weed control in rangelands (guinea grass, fireweed, christmasberry, lantana, lemon guava, klu bush, strawberry guava on Hawaii Island)
· insectary plants for promoting beneficials
· sustainable insect control in general, for chinese rose beetle, ants, fruit fly, pepper weevil, leafhopper, bean fly, borers, leaf miners,
· proper selection of plant materials to avoid pests
· pest resistant varieties
· relationships between crop rotations and pest species

The survey results will be provided to the trainers so that they can develop appropriate resource information to answer field staff questions.

We ordered, received, and distributed publications relating to sustainable pest control from ATTRA to begin familiarizing participants with some of the available literature and information searches.

Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes

As the grant has just begun, it is premature to report impacts and contributions at this time.


Richard Ebesu
CES Agent
UH Cooperative Extension Service
CES Kauai
3060 Eiwa Street #210
Lihue, HI 96766-1881
Office Phone: 8082743471
Alton Arakaki
CES Agent
UH Cooperative Extension Service
Molokai Office
PO Box 394
Hoolehua, HI 96729
Office Phone: 8085676934
Dr. Mark Wright
Assistant Professor / Extension Specialist
Univerisity of Hawaii at Manoa CTAHR
Office Phone: 8089567670
Dr. Flordeliza Javier
College of Micronesia – FSM
Cooperative Research & Extension Land Grant Prog
PO Box 159
Kolonia, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Dr. Brent Sipes
Associate Plant Pathologist
University of Hawaii at Manoa CTAHR
Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences
3020 Maile Way, Gilmore Hall 310
Honolulu, HI 96822
Office Phone: 8089567076
Bob Shaffer
Alternative Agriculture Consultant
Dr. John McHugh
Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation Env. Committee
Environmental Committee
Dr. Janice Uchida
Associate Plant Pathologist
University of Hawaii at Manoa CTAHR
Office Phone: 8089562827
Dr. Cerruti RR Hooks
Junior Entomologist
University of Hawaii at Manoa CTAHR
Office Phone: 8089562448
Larry Shinshiro
State Agronomist
USDA NRCS Hawaii State Office
Prince Kuhio Federal Bldg.
300 Ala Moana Blvd. Rm 4-118
Honolulu, HI 96850
Office Phone: 8085412600
Dr. Eileen O’Hora-Weir
QC Officer
Hawaii Organic Farmers Association
PO Box 6863
Hilo, HI 96720
Office Phone: 8089697789
Robert Joy
Plant Materials Specialist
USDA NRCS Plant Materials Center
Maunaloa Highway
PO Box 236
Hoolehua, HI 96729-0236
Office Phone: 8085676885
Jody Smith
Education Specialist II
University of Hawaii at Manoa
NREM Dept Sherman Lab
1910 East West Rd
Honolulu, HI 96822
Office Phone: 8089567774