Photo credit: Sam Fraser-Smith/Creative Commons
It's no secret that the use of pesticides in agriculture is potentially dangerous.
Those that make, apply, and consume them -- everyone from factory works to farmers to everyday consumers -- are vulnerable to the harmful chemicals they contain. But pesticides also allow farmers to protect yields and meet demand for their crops.
So what are the alternatives? One method is the use of animals—including everything from bacteria and insects to reptiles and mammals—that prey on troublesome pests. But these pest predators do not come without trade-offs of their own—and some have proven to be completely devastating to local ecosystems.