Guru GyaanAgroStar Agronomy Centre of Excellence
Know more about the bajra earhead worm and ways to control it
Bajra is being cultivated in monsoon as well as in summer season also. At present, bajra crop may be at panicle stage or panicle emergence stage. This milking stage of crop may be damaged severely by the earhead worm and blister beetles. Appropriate control measures should be practised.
· There are three different species of ear head worms damaging bajra crop at earhead stage. Among them, American bollworm (Helicoverpa) cause huge economic loss.
· This caterpillar is polyphagous in nature and hence can migrate from the nearby field crops to bajra crop.
· These caterpillars exist in different colours and possess parallel lines on its body.
· For confirmation, collect one caterpillar in your palm and slap on its head portion. It bite like a snake, this is one of the behaviours of this larva.
· Initially, these caterpillars feed on silken fibres present on the panicle.
· At the milking stage caterpillars feed on developing seeds.
· Production gets affected if timely measures have not been taken.
· Perform deep summer ploughing in the field.
· During the head formation stage, install 10 pheromone traps per acre.
· Since these caterpillars are eaten up by the predatory birds, adopt various tricks to attract the birds.
· Since these caterpillars attack at grain formation stage, spraying of any chemical is not advisable.
· On initiation, spray neem based formulation @ 20 ml (1% EC) to 40 ml (0.15% EC) per 10 lit of water.
· Spray Beauveria bassiana, a fungus base powder @ 40 g or Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacterial base powder @ 10 g per 10 lit of water.
· The Nuclear Polyhedrosis Virus (NPV- 250 LU) is available for this caterpillar, spray @ 10 ml per 10 lit of water, two times, first on initiation of panicle and second at milking stage.
· By growing green gram as intercrop, the infestation of these caterpillars remains lower.
Source: Agrostar Agronomy centre of excellence
If you find this information is useful to you, like it and share it with your farmer friends.