Insect Pests Constraints to Pigeon pea [Cajanus Cajanus ( L.) Millsp] Production: Perspectives of Farmers in Benue, Kogi and Nasarawa States of Nigeria.
Questionares were administered to 225 farmers selected from three Local Government Areas of Benue, Kogi and Nasarawa States for the purpose of appraising their knowledge about the economic impact of insect pest attack on the productivity of pigeonpea. The socio-economic characteristics of the farmers were documented to see to what extent these influenced perspectives. Across the three states, the majority of the farmers were middle-aged, literate (attended and /or complete Primary, Secondary School), cultivated 1-5 hectares, and had <5years experience in Benue State and 5-10 years’ experience in Kogi and Nasarawa States. Production was large to satisfy food requirement (64.0%), and secondarily for income or for the ancillary benefit of livestock feed. Nutritive value, yield, market value and adaptation to the environment were the more important determinants of varietal selection then resistance to insect pests. Insect accorded major pest status included aphids, (Aphis craccivora), thrips, (Megalurothrips sjostedti), and Anoplocnemis curvipes. Most respondents (70%) agreed that late sowing accentuated insect damage just as intercropping with cereal (58% of respondents). It was only in Kogi state that a respondent claimed to use insecticide for insect control. The constraints to insecticidal control were high cost (40.0%). Lack of equipment (17.0%), lack of application skill (12.0%), and non-availability of insecticides (9.3%). Farmers-participatory research on crop loss assessment is to be encouraged to provide a premise for control action against economically-important insect pests of pigeonpea in Benue, Kogi, and the Nasarawa States
Pigeonpea, Farmer's perspective, Insect pests
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