Specific Diversity and Damage of Termites on Upland Rice in Benin uri icon

abstract

  • Termites are considered useful insects in natural savannah because of their role in soil fertility regulation, soil aeration and soil porosity. However, they are perceived as a serious threat for tropical agriculture. Due to the complexity of their populations and habitats, they cause high losses on dryland crops, especially upland rice. The present study aimed to analyze the specific diversity of termites on rice (Oryza) in rainfed upland conditions in Benin and to assess the damage they cause. Sampling was carried out in natural savannah and rice fields with 10 upland varieties to evaluate the population of termites. Specific damage was located on the susceptible organs of rice plants. The study allowed the identification of four termite species in the shrub savannah and six species in rice field. The commonest species on rice were Microcerotermes parvus, Microtermes sp., Pseudacanthotermes militaris and Amitermes evuncifer. Termite attack was diverse, but mainly affected roots and stems. The results of this study contributed to the identification of the diversity of termite species on rainfed upland rice and also to the identification of the damage they cause in order to undertake targeted measures against the key species.

publication date

  • 2012