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Farmers' perceptions of importance, control practices and alternative hosts of maize stemborers in Uganda

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 February 2007

T. Kalule
Affiliation:
Namulonge Agricultural and Animal Production Research Institute, PO Box 7084, Kampala, Uganda
Z.R. Khan*
Affiliation:
International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, PO Box 30772-00100, Nairobi, Kenya
G. Bigirwa
Affiliation:
Namulonge Agricultural and Animal Production Research Institute, PO Box 7084, Kampala, Uganda
J. Alupo
Affiliation:
Namulonge Agricultural and Animal Production Research Institute, PO Box 7084, Kampala, Uganda
S. Okanya
Affiliation:
Namulonge Agricultural and Animal Production Research Institute, PO Box 7084, Kampala, Uganda
J.A. Pickett
Affiliation:
Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, Herts, AL5 2JQ, UK
L.J. Wadhams
Affiliation:
Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, Herts, AL5 2JQ, UK

Abstract

A survey was conducted in Tororo, Bugiri and Kapchorwa districts in eastern and northeastern Uganda on farmers' perceptions of constraints in maize production. Farmers in Tororo and Bugiri consistently ranked stemborers and striga as the major production constraints in maize growing, while those in Kapchorwa ranked stemborers and lack of capital as the most important. Approximately 35 and 40% of the farmers in Tororo and Bugiri, respectively, identified stemborers as the ‘caterpillar’ that destroys their maize. In Kapchorwa, 50% of the farmers identified stemborers. Pesticide application was the most common control measure while the use of indigenous and cultural control measures was limited. Less than 50% of the farmers were aware of the existence of alternative plants/grasses on which stemborers feed. This study identified the need for creating farmers' awareness on the biology and ecology of stemborers. Empowering farmers by letting them learn and experiment will facilitate the development of innovative control measures.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © ICIPE 2006

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