Spread of plant virus disease to new plantings: a case study of rice tungro disease.
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The spread of plant virus disease between fields is reviewed for several horticultural and agricultural crops. Previous studies have focused on cropping systems where there is scope for using separation in time and space to reduce the potential for virus spread between plantings. In our study, data are presented on virus disease spread between fields in an irrigated rice area in the tropics where crops are grown continuously throughout the year. An intensive survey was conducted in rice fields planted from November 1992 to October 1994 in which the occurrence of new infections of rice tungro virus disease was recorded. The effect of a number of variables on disease incidence, including the proximity of a field to inoculum sources, was examined using ordinal regression analysis. Primary infection showed large seasonal fluctuation. In addition, the number of leafhopper vectors had a significant effect, as did the tungro vector resistance of the rice variety grown. The distance to nearest inoculum source and the tungro incidence of this source significantly affected the level of infection occurring in a vulnerable field. The results are discussed in relation to management strategies to reduce the spread of tungro disease between fields in irrigated lowland rice cropping systems.
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