Institutional Repository

The management of diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (Linnaeus) (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), population density on cabbage using chemical and biological control methods

Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisor Modise, D. M.
dc.contributor.advisor Nofemela, R. S. Bopape, Malesela Jonas 2014-07-04T13:22:31Z 2014-07-04T13:22:31Z 2013-11 2014-07-04
dc.identifier.citation Bopape, Malesela Jonas (2013) The management of diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (Linnaeus) (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), population density on cabbage using chemical and biological control methods, University of South Africa, Pretoria, <> en
dc.description.abstract The diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (Linnaeus) (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), is a cosmopolitan insect pest of Brassica crops. In South Africa, there are no action thresholds for its chemical control which makes it difficult for growers to make informed decisions on when to apply insecticides and how frequently to apply them in order to achieve optimal crop yield. To contribute towards optimum application of insecticides against P. xylostella, this study compared the impact of weekly and bi-weekly applications of a selective insecticide Dipel® (Bacillus thuringiensis Berliner var. kurstaki) applied at 250 g/ha, and a broad-spectrum insecticide Dichlorvos (an organophosphate) applied at 1 ml/L against biological control (Control) on the pest population density on cabbage during October– December 2011 and March–May 2012. The use of both selective and broad-spectrum insecticides for experiments enables us to understand if efforts to optimise cabbage yield depend mainly on effective suppression of P. xylostella densities. Furthermore, investigations were carried out to determine the impact of these chemicals on parasitism rates of P. xylostella and species richness of its primary parasitoids. During the October–December 2011 growing season, the lowest infestation of P. xylostella occurred on cabbage plots that received weekly application of Dipel and the highest on untreated control plots. Cabbage weights were negatively related to infestation levels, implying that weekly application of Dipel yielded bigger cabbage heads. During March– May 2012, P. xylostella infestations were again higher on the control followed by weekly and bi-weekly treatments of Dichlorvos, then weekly and bi-weekly applications of Dipel. Despite the significant differences observed, infestation levels were much lower (< 1 P. xylostella per plant on average) in all treatments during this season. Consequently no significant differences in cabbage weights were observed among the treatments. The lower infestation levels were attributed to higher parasitism levels (≥50 %), especially during the early stages of crop development. A total of four parasitic Hymenoptera species were recorded from P. xylostella larvae and pupae during October–December 2011, while three species were recorded during March– May 2012. However, Cotesia vestalis (Haliday) (Braconidae) accounted for >80 % of total parasitism levels in all treatments. Parasitism levels were not significantly different among the treatments in both seasons. Parasitoid species richness was highest on the control. Although two parasitoid species were recorded in all Dipel and Dichlorvos treatments during October–December 2011, only one parasitoid species was recorded in the Dipel treatments during March–May 2012 compared to two species in Dichlorvos treatments. Although weekly applications of Dipel ensured good yield and crop quality during October–December, weekly applications of the chemical did not lead to better quality crop during March–May crop growing season. Thus, it is not necessary to apply insecticides during periods in which natural mortality of P. xylostella is high due to parasitoids. Since P. xylostella abundance was a determining factor of crop quality, these results imply that insect pest management should focus mainly on suppressing its numbers. Furthermore, there was no evidence that application of either insecticide type had a negative impact on parasitism rates of P. xylostella. The lower parasitoid species richness on Dipel treated plots was the consequence of its higher efficiency in suppressing the pest population which substantially reduced availability of potential hosts for parasitoids, hence only the efficient C. vestalis was recorded at low host densities en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (xi, 59 leaves) : illustrations (some color), graphs en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject.ddc 635.34978
dc.subject.lcsh Cabbage -- Diseases and pests en
dc.subject.lcsh Diamondback moth -- Control en
dc.subject.lcsh Plutellidae -- Control en
dc.subject.lcsh Diamondback moth -- Biological control en
dc.subject.lcsh Plutellidae -- Biological control en
dc.title The management of diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (Linnaeus) (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), population density on cabbage using chemical and biological control methods en
dc.type Dissertation en
dc.description.department Agriculture and  Animal Health en M.Sc. (Agriculture)

Files in this item

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record

Search UnisaIR


My Account