Emana Getu Degaga:
Sweet Potato Weevil and its Management in Ethiopia


Addis Ababa Univeristy, Biology, Ethiopia

Sweet potato is one of the major crops grown in southern and eastern Ethiopia on which millions and millions of people depend for food and as a means of cash generation. The crops are left for long period of time beyond its physiological maturity in the field on which it grows as a means of storage. Though sweet potato weevil infest the crop starting from the vegetative stage, its ill effect very much increases when harvesting is delayed beyond its physiological maturity. The losses by sweet potato weevil to sweet potato can reach over 50% within two months of extra storage. Two species of sweet potato weevil attack sweet potato in Ethiopia. These are Cylas puncticollis and Cylas formicarius. C. puncticollis is very common in southern Ethiopia, while C. formicarius is problematic in eastern Ethiopia. Attempts made to develop an integrated management of the pests succeeded in identifying some cultural practices and resistant varieties. Three times earthing up, regular cultivation when the soil is black soil, crop rotation, prompt harvesting and the use of deep rooted sweet potato varieties significantly suppress the population of sweet potato weevil in Ethiopia. Hence, these packages can be used as integrated management of sweet potato weevil in the country.

Keywords: Integrated pest management, sweet potato, sweet potato weevil


Contact Address: Emana Getu Degaga, Addis Ababa Univeristy, BiologyArada Arat Kilo, 0000 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, e-mail: egetudegaga@yahoo.com
Andreas Deininger, October 2010