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Farmers in Wayanad Warned of Fall Armyworm Infestation

Prity Barman
Prity Barman
Farmer at Wayanad
Farmer at Wayanad

Following an infestation of fall armyworm (FAW), which causes significant crop damage, the Agriculture Department has issued an advisory to farmers in Wayanad district.

Pest attacks on maize cultivation and plantain crops have been recorded in several areas of the district, including Perikkallur and Pulpally in Panamaram block panchayat and Edavaka in Mananthavady block panchayat.

The invasive pest wreaked havoc on maize crops throughout the region. It was discovered that it had harmed the district's plantain crop, especially the nendran type, according to Principal Agriculture Officer Sajimon K. Varghese.

The lepidopteran insect that originated in the Americas has spread across the world, wreaking havoc on crops. In 2016, it moved to Africa, and in June 2018, it moved to India. It feeds in vast numbers on the leaves and stems of over 80 different plant species, wreaking havoc on maize, rice, sorghum, sugarcane, vegetable crops, and cotton.

Two years ago, a pest attack on maize was reported in some parts of the Thrissur and Malappuram districts, but it was soon eradicated. However, according to Mr. Sajimon, a recent department survey in the district in December showed that it had attacked a two- to four-month-old plantain crop.

A female moth lays 100 to 200 eggs within the whorls of leaves, according to the cop. The worms that hatch from the eggs consume the lower portion of the leaves, turning them from green to white.

Farmers can contact the nearest Krishi Bhavan or call 9495756549 or 9447530961 if they notice an infestation, he said.

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