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South American Worm Theatens Cambodian Corn Crops

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 3:35 am
by CEOCambodiaNews
June 15, 2019
Worm epidemic destroys 10, 000 hectares of corn
More than 10, 000 hectares of corn in four provinces were destroyed by the Fall Armyworm – (Spodoptera frugiperda) which is a new type of worm that has never been identified before in Cambodia.

Veng Sakhon, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, said that as of June 11, a total of 11,142 hectares of corn fields were destroyed which are 2,544 hectares in Pailin ; 3,033 hectares in Battambang; 4,715 hectares in Banteay Meanchey and another 850 hectares in Tbong Khmum province.

“New species of worms are considered to be the main annoying pests which originated from South America. The pests can destroy more than 80 types of crops and plants, including corn, which is a favorite crop for this kind of worm.” Mr Sakhon said. ... ing-corns/

Re: South American Worm Theatens Cambodian Corn Crops

Posted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:49 am
by CEOCambodiaNews
Fall armyworm invades crops across Asia
published : 20 Jun 2019 at 13:45
writer: Reuters

NAKHON RATCHASIMA/SINGAPORE: Looking out at his empty, red-earth field, Thai farmer Puang Timdon said his two-week-old maize crop didn't stand a chance against the fall armyworm pest.

"All the eight rai I planted were all heavily infested," said the 42-year-old from his farm in Ban Nong Tor town in Pak Chong district, 180km northeast of the capital Bangkok.

"The worm ate the whole field in three days, leaving so much damage that it wasn't worth saving."

Fall armyworm, a caterpillar that got the name because it invades croplands in droves, much like an army, has rapidly spread across Asia since it was detected in southern India late last year. Fields in Bangladesh, Myanmar, Vietnam, Indonesia and Taiwan have fallen victim. In Thailand, it has badly affected the country's corn crop, much of which is sold to the animal feed industry.

In recent months, the pest has also been found in 18 of China's 33 provinces and regions and is now threatening to spread across the key corn region in the northeast. China is the world's second biggest corn consumer and producer.

"It is a major issue for crops. It could pose a food security threat," said Phin Ziebell, an agribusiness economist at National Australia Bank. "Management cost is an issue for small farmers."

Marjon Fredrix, an agricultural officer at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), said some countries have reported damage to crops hit by the pest at 1.2% to about 10%, while others had put the figure at 20% to 40%.

"Once the fall armyworm has arrived, it can't be eradicated, and farmers will have to manage it," Mr Fredrix said.
Full article: ... cross-asia

Re: South American Worm Theatens Cambodian Corn Crops

Posted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:52 am
by SternAAlbifrons
This could be seriously bad news.
40% crop losses can be expected, which will make farming corn uneconomical.

All scientific evidence suggests chemical pesticides have very limited effectiveness -
and cause great damage to farmer's health and to the environment (especially bees, the pollinators)
Despite this, in Africa pesticides have been the go-to remedy for this pest by both governments and poor farmers, in the belief that they will bring instant results.

We can probably expect the same response here - despite effective integrated management strategies having been developed.

(PS, buy soya bean futures)

Re: South American Worm Theatens Cambodian Corn Crops

Posted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 5:01 am
by AndyKK
With the order to monitor, being the only action, is the problem going to grow!
The armyworm is partial to green, red and yellow, the feast has started and the habitat seems well suited. Most of the natural predators have gone, due to them losing their habitats, deforestation and building industry boom may have had a little contribution that was not thought of. The habitat seems very suitable for this newcomer.

Re: South American Worm Theatens Cambodian Corn Crops

Posted: Sat Aug 03, 2019 12:57 am
by CEOCambodiaNews
Lao farmers stand to lose millions of kip from caterpillar infestation
Asia News Network | Publication date 02 August 2019 | 13:43 ICT
[Note: A female fall armyworm moth can lay eggs 10 times and then die. Each time she lays 100 eggs. The moth can fly about 100km in one day. AFP]

Sweetcorn farmer Sengchanh Vilaylak has incurred losses to the tune of more than 20 million kip ($2,300) this year after his crop was severely impacted by the current epidemic of fall armyworms in Laos’ Xayaboury province.

Sengchanh’s family is among the 150 who plant corn as their primary commercial crop, a significant source of income for the people of Paklai district’s Saenphon village.

However, the caterpillars have invaded their crops, causing devastating losses.

Sengchanh, 49, told Vientiane Times he had invested more than 8.5 million kip in planting sweetcorn on 2ha. The money was spent on seeds, preparing land and clearing weeds. He used the savings of his entire family for this project.

Nevertheless, he still considers himself luckier than other villagers who have mostly taken out loans from sweetcorn traders or banks if they can meet the lending requirements.

These people are now staring at difficult times as they are soon going to have to repay their mounting debts.

This year has brought bad luck for all sweetcorn growers in Saenphon village as they have encountered unprecedented problems.

Sengchanh has assessed his crop losses at between 70 and 80 per cent. He expects to get a yield of only five tonnes this season. ... nfestation