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Title: Impact of pesticides application and farm management practices on soil dwelling arthropods in selected cocoa farms in the Eastern Region of Ghana
Authors: Momodu, Jalloh
Issue Date: 4-Apr-2016
Abstract: Soil arthropods are very vital links in the food chain as decomposers. In Ghana, the control of insect pests in cocoa farms is mainly by the use of synthetic pesticide. The impact of these applied pesticides and farm management practices on abundance and richness of soil arthropods within the litter and 0-10 cm depth of the soil in cocoa farms at New Tafo-Akim and Akwadum in the Eastern Region of Ghana was monitored for four months (October 2014 – January 2015). Berlese Tullgren extraction method was used for the extraction of the litter and soil arthropods. Collembola, Acarina, Hymenoptera, Araneae, Diptera, Coleoptera, Blattaria and Myriapoda were collected from the litter and soil. Collembola, Acarina and Hymenoptera constituted the most abundant while Araneae and Blattaria were the least abundant in both the litter and soil. Comparatively, cocoa farms where organic pesticides were used harboured numerically higher arthropod numbers than farms where synthetic pesticides were applied. There were no significant differences (P > 0.05) in the number of Collembola, Acarina, Hymenoptera, Diptera, Coloeptera, Blattaria and Myriapoda collected from farms subjected to the two pest management systems. There were significant differences (P < 0.05) in the number of arthropods collected from the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana’s (CRIG) plots with respect to the Diptera and Myriapoda. The use of herbicides as a farm management practice to control weeds had a significant effect on Collembola, Acarina and Araneae in the litter and on Diptera and Myriapoda in the soil. The soil physicochemical parameters (soil pH, soil moisture content and soil hydrocarbon) had no significant effect on the abundance and richness of soil arthropods. However, soil pH within the farm management system was observed to have a significant effect on the richness and abundance of soil arthropods. The results showed that pesticides application over the years have not adversely affected the abundance and richness of soil arthropods within the studied cocoa farms.  
Description: A Thesis presented to the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Crop Protection (Entomology), 2015
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/8455
Appears in Collections:College of Agric and Natural Resources

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