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University of KwaZulu-Natal (2018)

Emerging and new pests under climate change in Limpopo Province, South Africa.

Phophi, Mutondwa Masindi

Titre : Emerging and new pests under climate change in Limpopo Province, South Africa.

Auteur : Phophi, Mutondwa Masindi.

Université de soutenance : University of KwaZulu-Natal

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Crop Science 2018

Vegetable production is constrained by pests such as weeds, insects and diseases. The damage caused by pests and diseases can be highly exacerbated by climatic changes and variability. Poor agricultural practices play a role in increasing greenhouse gas emissions which contribute to climate change. Climatic factors such as increased temperature, increased carbon dioxide levels and erratic rainfall are responsible for influencing pest distributions, pest migration and increased pest population. Distribution and migration of pests can also result from globalization, trade and movement of people. Poor biosecurity and phytosanitary measures are also involved in bringing new pests in countries. This study was conducted in Limpopo Province in four municipalities of Vhembe District (Mutale, Musina, Makhado and Thulamela). Quantitative and qualitative techniques were used in data collection. Data was collected through questionnaire surveys, focus groups discussions and key informants. Farmers were randomly selected from a list provided by extension officers in each municipality. Three focus groups were conducted in each municipality consisting of seven women, seven men and a combined group of seven men and women. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to compare mean differences between different variables. Means and significant differences between means were declared at P ≤ 0.05. The aim of this study was to evaluate the presence of new and emerging pests in Limpopo Province. The major objectives of the study were to evaluate farmer’s perception on climate change and new and emerging pests, to determine the control measures used by farmers to manage vegetable insect pests, to evaluate the role of institutions on insect pest management, and to determine new and emerging pests in the district. Results of the study indicated that long dry spells, late rainfall and warmer winters were major indicators of climate change in Limpopo Province. Famers in all municipalities perceived aphids as major problematic insect pests to vegetables and were not significantly different from each other (P > 0.05). The highest percentage of aphid prevalence was found in Mutale municipality (82.1%) and the lowest was found in Thulamela municipality (66.7%). Tuta absoluta (South American tomato pinworm) and Spodoptera frugiperda were reported as new insect pests in Vhembe District. Tuta absoluta was only reported in Musina municipality. Spodoptera frugiperda was significantly higher in Makhado irrigated system (72%) and was significantly different from Musina municipality (8.3%) and Thulamela dryland system (19%). Bagrada hilaris (bagrada bug) and Acanthoplus discoidalis (armoured bush cricket) were observed as emerging pests in the district.


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