Comparative assessment of insect pests population densities of three selected cucurbit crops

Alao Fatai Olaitan, Timothy Adebayo Abiodun, Adeola Odewole Foluke, Olomitutu Emmanuel Oluwaseyi


Received: 2016-09-05 | Accepted: 2016-12-21 | Available online: 2017-12-31

The study on the relative abundance of insect pests is a critical factor for a successful implementation of insect pest management program. Therefore, this experiment was conducted to compare the intensity of insect infestations among the selected three cucurbit crops (Cucumber, Egusi melon and Watermelon). The experiment was set up at Teaching and Research Farm Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso in a Randomized Complete Block Design replicated three times. Significant difference was observed in the tested crops in respect to insect population density on leaf, flower and fruit. Among the tested crops, watermelon was observed to be the most susceptible to the observed insects meanwhile the cucumber had the least insect infestation rate 0.00 at P < 0.05. Also the insect infestation was low as the maturity of the leaves increased. The population density of flea beetle (Phyllotreta cruciferea) and spotted beetle (Diabrotica undecimpunctata) were observed to be relatively higher at vegetative stage and decreased at flowering stages while Dacus cucubitae caused significant economic damage during the fruiting stage to watermelon, melon and cucumber fruits (33.3, 20.0  and 1.0) respectively. This research work demonstrated that control of insect pests should be initiated at each growing stage of the selected crops.

Keywords: Cucumber, Dacus cucubitae, Pyllotreta cruciferae, watermelon, melon


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