BIOLOGICAL CONTROL OF ARTHROPODS IN
RANGE, FORAGE & GRAIN CROPS
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Crops included in this category are alfalfa, sorghum, sugar beets and cereal grains. Principal pests are Coleoptera, Lepidoptera and Homoptera. Research effort is on integrated pest management, when the short-term nature of a crop, such as rice, tends to obstruct self-perpetuating classical biological control.
Rice.--The striped stem borer, Chilo suppressalis (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) is distributed through southern Europe, the Middle East and Asia (Kahn et al. 1991). It feeds on the Poaceae, attacking more than 38 species of grass (Kinoshita & Kawada 1932, Kiritani & Iwao 1967, Romena and Heinrichs 1989, Kahn et al. 1991). it is one of the most injurious pests of cultivated and wild rice (Oryza spp.) (Kiritani & Iwao 1967, Hattori 1971, Reissig et al. 1986).
The life cycle and biology of C. suppressalis was described by Banerjee & Pramanik (1967), Kiritani * Iwao (1967) and Pathak (1968). The pest lays its eggs in masses on the grass stem or leaf base, above the water line. During the first few days after hatching the neonates crawl between the leaf sheath and stem and feed on external plant tissue. Thereafter the larvae bore into the stem and feed for the rest of their larval period within the lumen (3-4 instars). Feeding by larval stem borers results in the severing of the stem apical to the point of damage. During Oryza's vegetative stage this results in the condition "dead heart," where the central leaf whorl does not unfurl, but dries out and turns brown. In the flowering stage, the panicle (seed stalk) dries out and takes on a whitish coloration as a result of stem borer feeding, a condition called "white heart." Pupation occurs in the lumen of the basal or middle internodes and follows the creation of a small circular exit hole produced for the escape of the adult moth. Mating occurs shortly after emergence from the stem and females lay ca. one mass every three days for 1-2 weeks. The life cycle requires 4-60 days, depending on temperature. In tropical areas such as the Philippines there are two or more rice crops annually, and stem borers are present year round (Cedaņa & Calora 1967).
Control of stem borers in rice has involved chemical pesticides, varietal resistance and the use of natural enemies (Kiritani 1972, 1977, 1979; Kahn et al. 1991). Even though cultural practices have aided in reducing crop damage, other methods are still required (Loevinsohn et al. 1988). These borers are difficult to control with pesticides because they are protected within the grass stem throughout much of their life cycle. Control is only achieved after repeated foliar applications (Bess 1967, Prakasa-Rao et al. 1970). Emphasis has focused on the development of stem borer resistant varieties of rice because this approach is economical, durable and not hazardous to humans and beneficial organisms (Chaudhary et al. 1984, Heinrichs 1986). Screening of rice germplasm for resistance against C. suppressalis started in 1962 by the International Rice Research Institute, and by 1991 more than 17,000 breeding lines were evaluated (Kahn 1991). Except for several wild species of Oryza, varieties of cultivated rice (O. sativa) have proven to be only moderately resistant to stem borers (Chaudhary et al. 1984, Romena & Heinrichs 1989).
There are ca. 100 species of parasitoids and 38 predators known to attack the striped stem borer (Kahn 1991). There are unknown numbers of bacteria, nematodes, viruses and fungi also able to attack this borer. Parasitism of the egg stage is high compared to lower rates of predation and parasitism of larval, pupal and adult stages (Bess 1967, Yasumatsu 1967, 1976; Yasamatsu & Torii 1968). Egg parasitoids in the genera Telenomus, Tetrastichus and Trichogramma can achieve a level of control that is near 100% in some years or areas (Rothschild 1970, Catling et al. 1983, Kim & Heinrichs 1985, Kim et al. 1986). A prominent parasitoid is Tetrastichus schoenobii Ferriere (Hym., Eulophidae) (Reissig et al. 1986, Kahn et al. 1991).
Tetrastichus schoenobii parasitizes stem borers of rice, corn, sugarcane, wheat many other grass species on Southeast Asia and India. Kahn et al. (1991) reported a total of 10 stem borer hosts. Although all juvenile stages of the striped stem borer are attacked, eggs suffer the highest parasitism (Reissig et al. 1986). This species is endoparasitic in stem borer eggs, but later instars of the parasitoid become predaceous on other host eggs within the egg mass (Rothschild 1970, Kim & Heinrichs 1985). An average of three host eggs are required to complete the larval period. Egg to adult eclosion requires ca. 9 days, and wasps mate immediately on emergence (Rothschild 1970, Bhuiyan & Sufian 1986). Both males and females multiply mate (Bhuijan & Sufian 1986). Mating in females is followed by a 24-h delay in oviposition, after which they begin to search for hosts (Bhuiyan & Sufian 1986). Wasps continually mature eggs during their lifetime (Rothschild 1970, Chao et al. 1979) and parasitize an average of 14 hosts per egg mass per day (Ding et al. 1986). Males and females life for 12-23 days, respectively (Bhuiyan & Sufian 1986).
Range Grasses-- Biological control of Rhodesgrass mealybug ,Dusmetia sangwani (Rao) , was achieved by airplane releases of an introduced parasite of limited dispersing ability. Schuster (1965-67, 70, 73, 76, Schuster et al. 1971). The parasitoid Anagyrus antoninae was, was imported to Texas from India where it provided completely biological control [please see<ch-94.htm>].
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