Title : Effectiveness of entomopathogenic fungi on immature stages and feeding performance of fall armyworm
The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), is a notorious polyphagous pest. Within a short period, this pest has ability to cause a significant damage to maize. Farmers are using widely synthetic pesticides to control fall armyworm. Further, the resistance development in insects and the non-target effect of chemicals on the environment and humans pose serious threats of using insecticides. The use of entomopathogenic fungi (EPF) is being considered an important tool in integrated pest management program. The main objective of this study was to check the impact of different conidial concentrations of fungus on the nutritional physiology of S. Frugiperda. The five fungal isolates, Aspergillus sp. BM-3 and SE-2-1, Cladosporium tenuissimum SE-10, Penicillium citrinum CTD-24, and Beauveria bassiana ZK-5 were assessed for their efficacy in causing mortality against first to sixth instar eggs and neonate larvae seven days post-treatment, and their effects on the feeding performance of sixth instar S. frugiperda larvae at 48 h post-treatment at three concentrations (1 × 106, 1 × 107, and 1 × 108 conidia mL−1) were also assessed. The six instar S. frugiperda larvae were not susceptible to the five tested fungal isolates. The tested fungal isolates could play an essential role as microbial biopesticides in suppressing the S. frugiperda population after further investigations on their efficacy are obtained in the field.