(Top borer or sugar cane top borer or top shoot borer) –
is considered to be a major pest of sugarcane in many parts of India. Reductions in yield and sugar contents
of up to 51% and 2.0 units, respectively, were recorded in Indian cane fields. Sugarcane infestation by
Scirpophaga excerptalis results weight loss, decreased cane length. And also reductions in cane stalk length.
Life Cycle :
Egg : Eggs are laid on the lower surface of top leaves in clusters particularly near midribs. The clusters are
covered with buff coloured hairs.
Larva : Smooth, white or cream coloured with a red coloured mid – dorsal line and yellow head.
Pupa : Pupation takes place within the larval tunnel in a chamber with an exit hole constructed by the caterpillar.
Adult : White Coloured moth (with a buff orange coloured anal tuft of hairs in female)
Host plants :
Mainly a pest of Sugarcane. Other hosts include: Mango, Sorghum and Wheat.
Early indications of the presence of Scirpophaga excerptalis on sugarcane include the presence of egg
clusters on the upper side of the leaves near the growing point. The egg clusters are usually 13 mm long
and covered by brownish-yellow hairs from the anal tuft of the female adult moth. First-instar larvae eat
through the rolled leaves which subsequently unfurl, producing a characteristic, repetitive pattern of small holes.
The larvae usually penetrate along the midrib of the leaf into the heart of the plant. They tunnel in the midrib
for 24-48 hours and emerge through the upper epidermis. Two or three first and/or second-instar larvae,
and on rare occasions third-instar larvae, can be found in the spindle of the stems. The top shoot becomes
withered and stunted, whereas the internodes beneath may produce new leaves. Damage is
generally most severe in young plants that thrive in a humid environment.
ETL for Scirpophaga excerptalis is 6-8 No’s of moths per trap per day.
Use 8-10 No’s Pheromone Traps per acre from one month crop stage to control pest at early stage.
Trap canopy should be placed one feet above crop canopy to achieve optimum catch.
Recommended trap model:
Phero-Sensor - BP™ trap
Recommended for: Sugarcane.