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A Fruitful April

Each month we will be highlighting some particularly interesting chapters from the Burleigh Dodds academic publishing company’s agricultural science database, which is available free to members until the end of June 2022.

Just login and visit our Crops Collection member page to access the full collection, then search for the hand-selected chapters below.

This month we are focusing on fruit…

Identifying and managing plant health risks for key African crops: fruit and other tree crops

Toko, Dr Muaka; Neuenschwander, Dr Peter; Yaninek, Dr J. Steve; Ortega-Beltran, Dr Alejandro; Fanou, Dr André; Zinsou, Dr Victor; Wydra, Dr Kerstin D.; Hanna, Dr Rachid; Fotso, Dr Appolin; Douro-Kpindou, Dr Ouorou

This chapter reviews control methods for the main pests affecting fruit and other tree crops. It describes the use of classical biological control for mango, papaya, cacao, coconut and citrus. Mango mealybug, Rastrococcus invadens, has been controlled with great success across West and Central Africa by two parasitoids. On papaya, the spiralling whitefly Aleurodicus dispersus has been controlled by two serendipitously introduced parasitoids. Papaya mealybug Paracoccus marginatus from South America was brought under control within one year by another parasitoid. These results were compromised by the invasion of the tropical fruit fly Batrocera dorsalis. The resulting mis-use of pesticides was replaced by bait sprays and parapheromones, a parasitoid introduced in Benin and Cameroon, and management of the African weaver ant Oecophylla longinoda. A new species of phytoseiid mite was introduced against the coconut mite, Aceria guerreronis. On cacao, Phythophthora megakarya was controlled by managing shade trees, soil cover, and applying fungicides. Cultural control measures were developed for cashew.


Bio-ecology of major insect and mite pests of tomato crops in the tropics

Srinivasan, Dr R.

In tropical climates, tomato production is severely constrained by insect and mite pests. The use of broad-spectrum chemical pesticides can make this problem worse, since it can eliminate the natural enemies of these pests. Changes in cropping system and the impacts of a warming climate can also alter the damage potential of pest infestations. Understanding the bio-ecology of these pests is therefore essential to developing effective strategies to manage them. In this chapter, we review recent research on the bio-ecology of the major insect and mite pests affecting tomato crops, including aphids, thrips, whitefly, various Lepidopteran species and spider mites. In each case, we consider how the pest affects the tomato plant, the natural enemies of the pest and how global warming could impact each pest.

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