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Bio-efficacy of Crude Aqueous Leaf Extracts against the Fall Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) and Maize Ear Rots in Zambia

Date: November 8,2022 |Hits: 677 Download PDF How to cite this paper

Mweshi Mukanga1,*, Owen Machuku1, Gilson Chipabika1,2, Matthews Matimelo1, Kelvin Mumba3, Gilson Chipabika1,2, Ndalamei Demaino Mabote1, Vincent Simwinga1, Isaiah Nthenga1, Marian Lupulula1, Sylvia Misengo Tembo1, Kabosha Lwinya1

1Mount Makulu Research Station, Zambia Agriculture Research Institute, Chilanga, Zambia.

2Department of Plant Science, School of Agricultural Sciences, University of Zambia, Zambia.

3Mochipapa Research Station, Zambia Agriculture Research Institute, Chilanga, Zambia.

*Corresponding author: Mweshi Mukanga


The use of crude aqueous leaf extracts (=plant extracts) provides an excellent opportunity to explore their potential as an alternative control method to chemical insecticides. Following the invasion of Zambia by Fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (FAW), huge amounts of chemical pesticides have been procured and applied to control the pest, potentially creating an environmental health hazard. This study was therefore conducted to assess the bio-efficacy of crude aqueous leaf extracts of selected plants against FAW and maize ear rots. A no-choice bioassay set up prior to a field trial revealed that extracts of Azadirachta indica, Gliricidia sepium, Nicotiana tabacum, Ricinus communis, and Tephrosia vogelii applied rate of 10% weight by volume exerted more than 40% FAW larvae mortality. These extracts when tested in a field experiment over two seasons, 2020 and 2021 with two checks, chemical insecticide, Lambda-cyhalothrin 5EC and untreated control significantly reduced FAW infestation by 21.7 to 33.3%, had low number of larvae per plant, and less leaf damage compared to the untreated control, though significantly higher than that insecticide control. It was further observed that more than two sprays were required to effectively control the pest. At harvest, there were significantly less incidence and severity of maize ear rot, low levels of cob damage and higher grain yield in leaf extract treatments than the unprotected maize. Overall, R. communis followed by A. indica and N. tabacum were most effective in reducing FAW attack and maize ear rot infection. Given their effectiveness, it is imperative these extracts are included in an Integrated Pest Management Program for FAW.


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How to cite this paper

Bio-efficacy of Crude Aqueous Leaf Extracts against the Fall Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) and Maize Ear Rots in Zambia

How to cite this paper: Mweshi Mukanga, Owen Machuku, Gilson Chipabika, Matthews Matimelo, Kelvin Mumba, Gilson Chipabika, Ndalamei Demaino Mabote, Vincent Simwinga, Isaiah Nthenga, Marian Lupulula, Sylvia Misengo Tembo, Kabosha Lwinya. (2022) Bio-efficacy of Crude Aqueous Leaf Extracts against the Fall Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) and Maize Ear Rots in Zambia. Advance in Biological Research3(1), 38-49.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.26855/abr.2022.11.001

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