biological control

noun

Definition of biological control 

1 : the reduction in numbers or elimination of pest organisms by interference with their ecology (as by the introduction of parasites or diseases)

2 : an agent used in biological control

Examples of biological control in a Sentence

She practices biological control in her gardening. She uses biological controls in her garden.

Recent Examples on the Web

Several species of parasitic wasps are under consideration as a method of biological control, though this strategy typically only becomes practical once an invasive species becomes established. Zach Montague, New York Times, "Lanternflies Eat Everything in Sight. The U.S. Is Looking Delicious.," 21 May 2018 But in both cases biological controls—where a natural enemy organism is introduced to counter the invader—turned out to be a useful tool, and the war between human and insect ended in stalemate. Connie Bruck, The New Yorker, "The Mail," 14 Mar. 2018 Efforts to control the plants using herbicides and biological controls such as weevils that eat only the target plant have limited success. Shannon Tompkins, Houston Chronicle, "Boaters key to slowing invasive species," 3 Mar. 2018 To Jentsch, the biological control is the lesser of two evils. Steven Strogatz, The New Yorker, "When Twenty-Six Thousand Stinkbugs Invade Your Home," 8 Aug. 2011 One biological control is beneficial nematodes, which sort of look like skinny worms. Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp, Indianapolis Star, "Raccoon damage may signal grub problem," 8 Dec. 2017 If a lot of redhumped caterpillars have been parasitized, this biological control alone may be all that is needed to rid the tree of these pesky insects. Debbie Arrington, sacbee, "Backyard horror story: Attack of the redhumped caterpillars," 27 Oct. 2017 There’s been a huge shift from chemical use to biological controls and sustainable fertilizer. Michelle Z. Donahue, Smithsonian, "These Flowers Come Straight From the Farm to Your Door," 13 Feb. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'biological control.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of biological control

1916, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about biological control

Share biological control

Statistics for biological control

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for biological control

The first known use of biological control was in 1916

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for biological control

biological control

noun

Medical Definition of biological control 

1 : the reduction in numbers or elimination of pest organisms by interference with their ecology (as by the introduction of parasites or diseases)

2 : an agent (such as pyrethrum) used in biological control

More from Merriam-Webster on biological control

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about biological control

Comments on biological control

What made you want to look up biological control? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

one that holds something together

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!