Walt Bentley honored with international award
A group of world IPM leaders presented UC Cooperative Extension integrated pest management advisor Walt Bentley with its Lifetime Achievement Award at the 7th International IPM Symposium March 27 in Memphis, Tenn. Bentley also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association of Applied IPM Ecologists in February.
Professionals and academics in the field of integrated pest management convene the international symposium annually to bring together the scientists and people who practice IPM every day in agriculture, natural areas and community settings to collaborate and develop collective strategies. Some of the modern IPM challenges the group addresses are herbicide resistance, bed bugs and invasive species. For more than 20 years, these experts in pest management have selected champions in their field to receive awards of excellence.
Bentley began his UC career in 1977 as a UC IPM entomologist focusing on pest problems in almonds, grapes and stone fruit. Since that time, he has been committed to three major goals as part of the UC Statewide IPM Program:
- Coordinate with others
- Do research that meets the needs of farmers
- Develop relevant outreach
Bentley and a team of UC Cooperative Extension advisors and specialists and collaborating farmers developed IPM approaches and alternative control strategies that successfully reduce the use of the highest risk insecticides (carbamates and organophosphates) in California by 80 to 90 percent in almonds, table grapes and tree fruit. This reduction helps the environment and the producers.