n African Entomology - Oviposition preference and survival of the maize stem borer, Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera : Noctuidae), on Napier grasses, Pennisetum spp., and maize
|Article Title||Oviposition preference and survival of the maize stem borer, Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera : Noctuidae), on Napier grasses, Pennisetum spp., and maize|
|© Publisher:||Entomological Society of South Africa (ESSA)|
|Author||J. Van den Berg, A.J.M. De Bruyn and H. Van Hamburg|
|Publication Date||Sep 2006|
|Pages||211 - 218|
|Keyword(s)||Busseola fusca, Habitat management, Napier grass, Oviposition, Survival and Trap crop|
Napier grass, Pennisetum purpureum, is used successfully as a trap crop for lepidopterous stem borers in Africa. This paper reports on the evaluation of the suitability of Napier grass varieties as trap crops for Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). This was done through oviposition preference tests and evaluation of larval survival on different varieties. Napier grass varieties were collected from the wild, from research institutions and farmers growing them as forage crops. In multiple-choice tests with the different Napier grass varieties, differences in oviposition preference were observed. Results from two-choice tests with Napier grass and maize plants indicated B. fusca moths have no marked difference in oviposition preference. However, compared to maize, larval survival on Napier grasses was low and a rapid decline in larval numbers was observed over the first week after inoculation on the grasses. A scanning electron microscope study of trichomes on Napier grass and maize leaves was conducted and the relationship between trichome number and larval survival determined. Significant negative correlations (P < 0.03) were observed between trichome numbers and larval survival.
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