Effects Of Rearing Method On Quality And Supply Of Maize Stem Borers For Use In Research In Kenya

  • V.M. Kega
  • R. Tende
  • S. Mugo
Keywords: Agriculture


Artificial infestation with stem borer larvae is critical in development of host plant resistance in maize to the pest. An insectary was established at KARI-Katumani in 1999 for mass rearing of stem borers to provide stem borers for field infestation in maize breeding nurseries where resistance to stem borer is routinely carried out. From year 2001 up to October 2008, 1,723,020 black head eggs, 80,120 neonates and 1,008 pupae were supplied for stem borer resistance screening work. To determine the optimum development and delivery of stem borers, a study was conducted to investigate the factors that determine the quality of mass reared stem borers. The study was carried out at KARI-Katumani in two seasons (2007 short rains and 2008 long rains). Life history parameters indicated the spotted stem borer (Chilo partellus Swinhoe) took on average 44.2 days, the pink stem borer (Sesamia calamistis Hampson) 57.1 days and the African stem borer (Busseola fusca Fuller) took 60 days. The average number of eggs laid was 315.4 by B. fusca, 504.6 by S. calamistis and 278.6 by C. partellus. The weight of pupae was 0.277g for B. fusca, 0.081g for C. partellus and 0.0151g for S. calamistis. The cost of rearing one pupa was KES 6.50 for C. partellus and KES 13 for S. calamistis and for B .fusca.  There were no records of poor quality products supplied for field work. These factors have important implications in rearing and supply of quality stem borers.

How to Cite
Kega, V., Tende, R., & Mugo, S. (2011). Effects Of Rearing Method On Quality And Supply Of Maize Stem Borers For Use In Research In Kenya. East African Agricultural and Forestry Journal, 76(1&2). Retrieved from https://www.kalro.org/www.eaafj.or.ke/index.php/path/article/view/417