Cotton is crucial fiber crop of Pakistan. It plays pivotal function by providing fiber, meals and fuel and earns foreign currency. The cotton provides uncooked subject material to all textile generators, ginning factories and oil mills. It could also be used for safe to eat oil, which makes about 80% of national oil production. Cotton has a lot more necessary utilization in our economic system in addition to in our culture subsequently; it is considered the mum of civilization.

The growers of Pakistan are suffering massive losses in yield and quality of cotton crop because of attack of more than a few insect pests and sicknesses every year. In Pakistan, cotton crop is attacked by way of about 150 types of insect pests; which act as vital proscribing consider expanding its manufacturing. Because in their mistaken or un-integrated control, our cotton production is very low as compared to many other cotton generating international locations of the sector.

Cotton crop is well broken by means of pests, so cotton growers are all the time searching for techniques to give protection to their crops. The provide situation of cotton field, with special reference to Sindh province, wishes special attention, where about the crop is suffering from an emerging downside of mealy bug horse pest.

This pest happens in most tropical spaces of the sector, together with Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Australia, and Oceania. The mealy bug arrived in Egypt from India in 1912 and in Hawaii in 1984. It gave the impression in Grenada, Trinidad, and St. Kitts within the1990’s and has unfold to other islands within the Caribbean, the place it assaults many hosts of financial significance.

Mealy bug is a small, scaled insect 1/fifth of an inch long (concerning the dimension of a small purple ant) that gets its title from its look, which seems like it has been rolled in coarse flour. Female adult is roughly three mm in length (1/10 inches), wingless, and have piercing–sucking mouthparts. A white cotton-like wax covers the feminine’s reddish frame. When punctured, the feminine’s frame fluids are also reddish, but it is very important be aware that every other mealy worm species could have a an identical shade.

Mealy bug horse belongs to reserve Hemiptera, sub-order Homoptera, kin Coccidae, sub-family Pseudoccidae. The super kin Coccoidea comprises mealy bugs and scale insects. Mealy insects overwinter as eggs on stems, in soil, in cracks and crevices in the stem, and inside crumpled leaves. Freshly laid eggs are orange but flip red just previous to hatch. The crawlers disperse from the ovisac by the use of walking, wind, or ants. The nymphs feed and turn into adults in roughly 30 days. The insect has a life cycle of 24 to 30 days. The female mealy worm produces 10-15 generations according to 12 months in colonies of 500-600 eggs.

Mealy worm is a serious pest in lots of parts of the world the place it causes severe injury to various vegetation. This mealy worm assaults more than 300 plant species together with rice, sugarcane, cotton, fruits; papaya, carambola, avocado, citrus, sugar-apple, sour sop, mango breadfruit, golden apple, cherry, plum, guava, pigeon pea, pastime fruit ,grape, banana; vegetables, tomato, cucumber, pumpkin, peppers, okra, dasheen, lettuce cabbage, beans, squash; ornamentals hibiscus, bougainvillea, croton, oleander, allamanda, ixora, anthurium, ginger lily, heliconia, schefflera, lantana, ficus, seagrape, and a large number of weeds and many others.

It feeds at the sap of the plant and releases toxic ingredients causing harm, curling and drying of leaves which, damages fruiting and significantly lower the yield. Mealy bug horse additionally attacks the roots slightly under the level of the soil, especially the place the root and the stem meet. Root mealy bug horse lays their eggs in sacs of interwoven filaments that resemble cotton wool. Mealy bug additionally excretes large amounts of honeydew onto the plant that during turn draws ants and sooty mildew. Keep ants below control as they are going to distribute the pests to different plants. It could also be unfold by means of wind, or it may be stuck on clothing or on the hair of animals. Mealy malicious program can unfold impulsively once introduced in an area.

Though the infestation nonetheless has now not reached at alarming scenario but when the pest is not managed it might motive severe injury to the crop. Furthermore it will have to be remembered that after mealy worm pests become established, it is extremely tricky to achieve appropriate regulate.

Signs of Mealy worm Infestation

One or extra of the following symptoms could also be observed:

  1. Crinkled or twisted leaves and shoots
  2. Bunched and unopened leaves
  3. Distorted or furry shoots
  4. White fluffy mass on buds, stems, fruit, and roots
  5. Presence of honeydew, black sooty mildew, and ants
  6. Unopened vegetation which incessantly shrivel and die
  7. Small deformed fruits.

Management Options

In contemporary days our revel in within the district Sanghar has proven that most effective the chemical regulate has grow to be very tough. The mealy insects produce massive amounts of honeydew (similar to that of produced via whiteflies and aphids), which can coat plants and surrounding floor with a sticky or waxy layer of honeydew (fig-three). Pesticides cannot simply penetrate the heavy wax layers. Therefore, applying pesticides handiest is an ineffective control method in contrast mealy worm pest. Thus mealy bugs value growers and shops million of dollars consistent with 12 months in keep watch over prices and crop damage right through the arena. However the managements should include following integrated keep an eye on options.

Weeds function host plant due to this fact they will have to be eradicated incessantly.

  1. The critically infested vegetation should be lower and burnt right away and field must be ploughed to kill immature stages to be had within the soil.
  2. Spray as strong a move of soapy water solution as the plant can tolerate; this must dislodge most of the bugs. This is one of the simplest ways to keep an eye on mealy bugs. Repeat should you see new egg sacs.
  3. Spray with a soap/oil (Mix 1 tsp. detergent surf +100 ml neem oil, and 16 liter water in a spray tank) aggregate might also give higher effects.
  4. The much less affected crop at early growth stage must be sprayed with Imidacloprid (120 gram/acre) or Thiamethoxam and is also repeated after five-7 days adopted by way of water spray. The spray will have to be achieved on the crawler level of mealy insects, as a result of it’s the most fragile degree and probably the most susceptible to chemical control.
  5. The foliar spray of Chlorpyrifos, Triazophos, Profenofos, and Bifenthrin is also carried out at later stage of crop. (i.e. after 100 days of sowing).
  6. Prior to the spray of Imidacloprid, Chlorpyrifos @ 2 Liter in line with acre must even be applied thru irrigation as to keep an eye on the basis infestation and suppress the pest population within the soil.
  7. Biological keep watch over offers the most secure, maximum economical and long term approach to this drawback. This technique depends on producing enough numbers of tiny wasps (parasitoids) that assault and kill the mealy malicious program. quite A Few natural enemies are recognized, together with the coccinellid predator Cryptolaemus montrouzieri and the parasites Anagyrus kamali and Gyranusoidea indica which suppress the mealy bug population. In Egypt and India, biological controls had been moderately successful in suppressing the mealy bug horse. Other coccinellid predators have also been reported in India. At present, 21 parasites and 41 predators are known to assault this pest international.

In final it should be remembered that when mealy bug horse pests grow to be established, it is extremely tough to achieve whole regulate.

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