Life History, Development and Behaviour of eldana Saccharina Walker on Sugar-Cane in Southern Ghana

  • M. A. Sampson
  • R. Kumar
Research Article


Female Eldana saccharina Walker was found to lay 327 ±17.1 eggs within a period of 4 days and required three surfaces to lay eggs which were mainly deposited on the inner side of leaf sheaths fitting tightly on to the sugar-cane stalk. The mated females laid more eggs per female (327.0 ± 17.1) than virgin females (212.3 ± 5.5). The incubation period of the eggs of E. saccharina was found to be 5.64 + 0.01 (5–7) days in the laboratory and 5.82 ± 0.03 (5–7) days in the field. The mean larval duration was 31 days and pre-pupal period lasted 2.05 ± 0.05 days. Larvae were found to exude a brownish liquid from their mouth in the direction of the invading predators. The newly hatched larvae spread out in 1–3 days of hatching. The mean growth ratio of the larval instars was 1.54 ± 0.05. Pupae frequently occurred very close to the exit hole (less than 5 cm) and the pupal period varied from 7 to 13 (9.76 ± 0.05) days. The life cycle of E. saccharina was completed in 49 (36–62) days. The pre-oviposition period was 2 days and the female reproductive life lasted 4 days. It takes about 53 days for a succeeding generation to be produced. Adults of E. saccharina survived from 6 to 13 days. Adults reared from field collected larvae showed a sex ratio of 42:51 which was significantly different from 1:1 in the laboratory bred stock, at the 5% level of probability. A comparison of the life cycle of E. saccharina populations in Ghana and Uganda suggests the existence of two biotypes of the pest.

Key Words

Sugar-cane Eldana saccharina borer generations sex ratio biotype Ghana 


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Copyright information

© ICIPE 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. A. Sampson
    • 1
  • R. Kumar
    • 2
  1. 1.International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE)NairobiKenya
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesRivers State University of Science and TechnologyPort HarcourtNigeria

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