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Farmers' knowledge and experience of indigenous insect pest control in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa

O O Odeyemi
P Masika
A J Afolayan


This study was conducted to document the knowledge of small-scale farmers regarding indigenous insect pest control methods in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. A survey was carried out using a combination of questionnaires and Focus Group Discussions. More than 70% of the farmers were literate, with both males (46%) and females (54%) actively involved in farming. 58% of the farmers were pensioners. Crops cultivated included maize and vegetables. The level of pest awareness among the farmers was high (92%), with over 70% of farmers relying on synthetic insecticides for pest control. 63% percent of the farmers were, however, were aware of indigenous methods of insect pest control. Unfortunately, such methods are currently being neglected and knowledge of their application was found to be eroding. It is necessary to re-popularise the indigenous methods of insect control given that they are mostly safer and cheaper than synthetic insecticides.

Keywords: farmers' knowledge; indigenous insect control

Indilinga Vol. 5 (2) 2006: pp. 167-175