Maize farmers advised to guard against aphid attack

Farmers who have raised maize as rain-fed crop have been urged to guard against aphid attack due to dry weather conditions.

According to Agriculture department, maize has been raised on 19,057 hectares during kharif and rabi seasons in Tiruchi district. It has been raised as a rain-fed crop in Pullampadi. Manachanallur, Thottiyam, Musiri, Uppilliyapuram, Thathaiyengarpet, Vaiyampatti and Manapparai taluks.

Due to dry weather and absence of rains, incidence of aphid attacks had been reported, especially in Thappaai, Malvaai and Sirukalappur in Pullampadi taluk, AR. Periyakaruppan, Joint Director of Agriculture,said. Aphids feed on the sap of plants.

At his request, a team of scientists from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Sirugamani Krishi Vigyan Kendra and officials carried out field inspections. The team also found the presence of other crop-friendly insects in the fields which are natural deterrents against aphids. If pesticides were sprayed, these friendly insects would also be destroyed, affecting the food chain.

With the dry weather conditions expected to change soon with the onset of monsoon, farmers had been advised to wait for some time. Once there is rainfall, the aphids would be destroyed naturally. In case of very heavy aphid attack, farmers may opt for pesticide use, Mr. Periyakaruppan said.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 3:55:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/farmers-told-to-guard-against-aphid-attack/article33048074.ece

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