Friday, December 11, 2009

Light trapping of insects is effective and practical.

Green Tree Frog stalks potential prey, sulfur butterfly (above).

Abe V Rotor

At the onset of the rainy season old folks trap winged termites (gamugamu or simutsimot) with a torch or a Coleman lamp placed at the center of a basin of water. The swarm may come early or late at night. In the morning the trapped insects are gathered and cooked into a delicacy. Fowls, house lizards, frogs and toads have their fill during the swarming period. The main species of termites that compose local swarms are Macrotermes gilvus and Heterotermes philippinensis, which build anthills (punso) in the field. The dry wood termites are smaller and darker in color.

IRRI recommends light trapping techniques under the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program against insects attacking the rice plant.
• Army worms (Spodoptera mauritia, S. litura) and cutworm (Mythimna separata) moths, both are highly attracted to light traps, especially during a new moon.

• Rice gall midge adults (Orseolia oryzae) are also attracted to light traps, but their numbers are highest during the full moon. So with plant hoppers (Delphacidae) and leafhoppers (Cicadellidae and Meenoplidae).

• Other insect pests attracted by light are the adult moth of the green hairy caterpillar (Rivula atimeta), green semilooper moth (Naranga aenescens), rice caseworm (Nymphula depunctalis), and rice bug (Leptocorisa acuta).

• Mole cricket (Gryllotalpha orientalis), June beetle (Leucopholis irrorata), both are also delicacies in many parts of Asia and Africa are also attracted by light.

The idea of light trapping is to capture the adult insects, especially the gravid female about to lay hundreds of eggs that hatch and cause widespread infestation. It eliminates the hazards of using pesticides so that the edible insects may serve to augment nutrition in the countryside. ~

Living with Folk Wisdom, AVR-UST Manila

No comments: