Red-headed Hairy Caterpillar in Sorghum
The adult moth has white fore wings bearing brownish markings and streaks, and the white hind wings have black spots. There is a yellow band on the head and a yellow steak along the anterior margin of the fore wings. Moth emergence occurs in waves following rains.
Cream or bright yellow eggs are laid in masses on the lower surfaces of leaves. The eggs may also be laid on the soil, stones, bits of wood, and on other vegetation. Eggs are laid in clusters of 50-100.A moth can lay up to 2300 eggs.
Crop damageThe dark hairy larvae feed gregariously on the lower surface of leaves, scrapping them for 4 or 5 days. After about 10 days larvae become ashy-brown and move slowly from plant to plant, and field to field, feeding voraciously.
Crop damage In about 40-50 days the larvae become fully grown. They are about 5 cm long and have white spots on the body, dense tufts of long hair, and a red head. The larvae, which often occurs in large numbers, are voracious leaf feeders.
- Plowing the field during summer, and collection and destruction of egg masses may help in reducing pest population.
- Hand picking of larvae, and collection and destruction of egg masses are effective in reducing the larval population.
- Use of light traps soon after the monsoon for 20-45 days, and collecting and killing of adult moths are effective.
- Migrating larvae of hairy caterpillar from one field to another can be checked by digging trenches across the direction of their march, and destroy them. Distribute small balls of poison bait in the field preferably during evenings.
- The poison bait is prepared by mixing 10 kg rice bran,1 kg jaggery and one liter Quinolphos.
- Note: Take care to see that livestock and children do not eat the poison bait.
- Dusting of Carbaryl or Quinolphos at 25-30 kg/ha controls young larvae. Use of 200 ml Dichlorovos 100 EC dissolved in 400 liters of water/ha may be used to control grown up caterpillars. Or, Spray Endosulphan 2 ml or Dimethiate 2 ml or Monocrotophos 1.6 ml/liter of water.
Submitted by bharati on Mon, 21/12/2009 - 12:02