Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

Utah State University Faculty Honor Lectures


The Faculty Association, Utah State Agricultural College

Publication Date



During the forty or more millions of years that insects have inhabited the earth they have developed remarkable adaptations and great powers of reproduction that have enabled them to spread over most of the world and occupy all of its habitable environments. In cultivating the land and in growing crops, man has disturbed the balance in nature which formerly prevailed. By doing this he has unwittingly assisted many insect species to multiply in unprecedented numbers by providing them with more delectable food in abundance and by transporting them from place to place and from continent to continent in his migrations and commerce.

Several species of insects, previously harmless, have become destructive pests of farm crops. It is highly probable that human activities have been largely responsible for local outbreaks of new insect pests which have attacked various crops with serious consequences.

All insect species are not detrimental to human interests. Bees and other pollinizing insects are essential to profitable crops of certain fruits and agricultural seeds. The silkworm, honeybee, and lac insect produce silk, honey, beeswax, and shellac, the value of which aggregates hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

Acknowledgements: The writer expresses his gratitude to the Faculty Association for the opportunity of presenting this treatise to its membership. Acknowledgement is made of the kind consideration of Director R. H. Walker, Utah Agricultural Experiment Station, who approved the use of the research data contained herein for this additional purpose. Thanks is also expressed to the Faculty Research Committee for suggestions given in connection with preparation of the manuscript.

Valuable assistance rendered in the original research work by the following former students is greatfully acknowledged: Dr. L. Floyd Clark, Dr. Ray L. Janes, Lowell Cutler, and Farrell H. Gunnell


This work made publicly available electronically on August 15, 2011.