Bugs destroy 30,000 hectares of rice-A A +A
Thursday, October 4, 2012
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Rice black bugs (RBB) recently damaged some 30,000 hectares of standing rice (palay) in the towns of Magalang and Arayat in Pampanga.
According to Crispin Guinto, provincial agriculturist, the presence of the rice black bugs has been noted in the rice plants along irrigated areas of said towns.
“Mayroon na tayong damage report at kasalukuyan na natin itong tinitingnan. Kailangan natin ngayon ay magtulungan para sa damage control system at hindi na dumami pa ang masisirang tanim na palay,” he said.
The black rice bug, locally known as “itim na atangya,” is a sap-feeding insect believed to be one of the most difficult pests to control.
Guinto said the farmers can use (Metarhizium anisopliae), an RBB-attacking microbial pathogen (a kind of fungus) that grows naturally in soils and causes diseases in various insects by acting as a parasitoid.
Ordinarily, (Metarhizium anisopliaeIs) are available at the Regional Crop Protection Centers of the Department of Agriculture.
Earlier, the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) suggested to the farmers in Central Luzon the use of super power lights with 2,000-3,000 watts near the infestation areas that would help in avoiding the outbreaks of bugs.
Studies have proven that the bugs (RBB) are strongly attracted to super power lights at night.
“I-report po ninyo agad sa municipal agriculturist para mabilis ang coordination natin kung sakaling magkaroon po kayo ng problema sa rice black bugs,” Guinto urged farmers.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on October 04, 2012.