Evaluation of Five Promising Pearl Millet Lines to Insect Pests in Upper East Region, Ghana

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June, 2016
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A study was undertaken in the 2013 cropping season at Manga Agricultural Research Station to determine the resistance of five pearl millet lines to insect pests. The study comprised the following treatments: (i) Bongo short head (ii) Arrow millet (iii) Bristled head millet (iv) Tongo yellow (v) Sox-sat (vi) Manga Naara ( Local check ) (vii) Manga Naara + insecticide. The main species of insect pests collected at the various phenological stages of the crop included; Stem borer (Coniesta ignefusalis, Hampson) Shoot fly (Atherigona sp) Lema spp., Mylabris spp. The bugs (Dysdercus, Acrosternum and Agonascelis species),Heliocheilus albipunctella, De-joannisand Amsacta spp. Significant differences (P ˂ 0.05) were observed among the lines with respect to the abundance of Lema spp. Mylabris spp. and Dysdercus spp. There were significant differences (P ˂ 0.05) in the densities of Lema spp. between the improved lines and the Local check. Significant differences (P < 0.05) were also observed in the numbers of Dysdercus and Mylabris species between the improved lines. Feeding of Lema spp on pearl millet leaves resulted in a significantly higher defoliation of Manga Naara (Local check) as compared to improved lines and Manga Naara + Insecticide. Manga Naara had significantly (P < 0.05) greater numbers of (Lema spp., shoot fly dead hearts, stem borer larvae and dead hearts, Mylabris and Dysdercus species). No significant differences in yields were obtained among treatments. The study showed that bristle long head performed better than the other lines and can be recommended for more improvement to enhance yield increase.
A Thesis Submitted to the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Philosophy Crop Protection (Entomology),