fall worm workshop
Image: Northeast Now

Manipur Agriculture Department has taken up necessary intervention programmes to combat invasion of fall army worm in the State’s maize cultivation areas since May 7 last.

Also read: Manipur hosts training on fall army worm management

So far around 70 joint surveillance teams of the departments have taken various measures including spraying of prescribed pesticides in the maize fields measuring around 283 hectares out of 313 hectares.

At the same the teams have so far covered 249 villages. Of which 203 villages were found to be affected.A helpline has also been opened for immediate contacts.

These information was shared by Director Laltanpuii Vanchhong of Agriculture department during the inaugural function of two day national workshop on ‘Scientific management of fall army worm in Maize production’ held at Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) Manipur centre premises in Imphal on Friday.

Also read: Manipur: Teams constituted to combat spread of army worm

The workshop was jointly organised by ICAR Manipur centre and ICAR-Indian Institute of Maize Research (IIMR), Ludhiana.

Meanwhile, expressing the need to check the natural enemies of the insect, Registrar Prof K Mamocha of Central Agricultural University wanted to know whether the insect comes from Bangladesh or Myanmar considering its character.

Stating that they are also checking natural enemies of the insect he said if the natural enemy sufficiently controls it, then we don’t need to worry.

However, principal scientist Dr Sekhar observed that the insect attack can be managed effectively by routine scouting and other necessary steps.

Sharing a similar sentiment, scientist Dr SL Jat of ICAR-IIMR New Delhi also opined that proper management strategies and effective scouting can control the economic damage.

Earlier formally inaugurating the workshop in presence of Director Dr N Prakash of ICAR for North Eastern Hill region Umiam, the Commissioner (Agriculture) Sumant Singh has called upon the farming community in the state not to panic because of the Fall armyworm attack on maize cultivation considering the ongoing steps which are being taken up by the state and central agencies.

He, however, asked the scientists to bring out clarity on whether the said devastating insect could attack other main crops particularly rice or not.

After all Manipur has rice cultivation area of about 2.25 lakh hectares whereas maize cultivation area occupies less then 20,000 hectares.

Later the scientists of ICAR,CAU and ICAR-IIMR had an interaction with the farmers.

Sobhapati Samom

Sobhapati Samom is Northeast Now Correspondent in Imphal. He can be reached at: ssamom@gmail.com

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