Efficacy of intercropping and harvest time modification for reducing field infestation of maize by Sitophilus zeamais Motschulsky (Coleoptera: Curculionidae)

Publication Type:Journal Article
Authors:S. Adelani Babarinde, Kolawole G. Oladejo
Journal:Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection
Date Published:2012

Most management practices of Sitophilus zeamais Motschulsky, a field-to-post-harvest insect pest of cereals, have focused on post harvest control methods. This experiment was designed to investigate the potential of cropping system and modification of time of harvest to control S. zeamais. Intercropping and harvest time modification had significant (P < 0.05) effect on the number of S. zeamais emerging 42 days post-harvest. For the early harvest (15 weeks after planting (WAP)), the mean number of S. zeamais recorded from a maize monoculture (7.39) was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than the mean numbers of weevils emerging from a maize-soybean intercrop (2.31), but not significantly higher than the number recorded in maize-groundnut (3.87) intercrop. For the late harvest (18 WAP), the mean number of emerged adult observed in the maize-soybean intercrop (6.13) was significantly lower than the mean number of adult emerging from the monocrop maize (13.24). Maize-groundnut intercrop did not significantly reduce field infestation of S. zeamais compared with monocrop maize. Percentage weight loss observed in early harvested maize was significantly (P < 0.0001) lower than what was observed in late-harvested maize. Percentage weight loss was highest in stored maize harvested from monocrop maize plots for the early harvest, whereas intercropping maize with soybean reduced percentage weight loss when harvest was delayed.

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