The destructive pests (insect and mite pests; fungal, bacterial, viral/mycoplasma, and nematode diseases) are posing a formidable challenge in the successful cultivation of plantation, spice and tuber crops. The enormous losses caused by these enemies of farmers have drawn the attention of agriculturists and policy makers. Recent years have witnessed an upsurge in the incidence and accentuation of pest problems of plantation, spice and tuber crops that are attributable to changing cropping patterns, intensive cultivation, and shift towards water saving techniques. Meager representation of crop protection specialists in extension set-up, both in public and private sector, has impacted the proper diagnosis of pest problems. Proper identification of plantation, spice and tuber crop pests is still a great problem at this time. Wrong identification is responsible for the improper pest management recommendations.
Hence, the idea of documenting a simple pictorial approach to facilitate pest/ disease/nematode diagnosis by non-specialists (state govt. officials, agriculturists, horticulturists, extension workers from related disciplines, corporate sector workers) who are engaged in field work was perceived. This compendium on “Pictorial Handbook for Diagnosis and Management of Plantation, Spice and Tuber Crop Pests (Vol. 4)” is a maiden effort to aid pest diagnosis and management. The purpose of this book is to enlist major plantation, spice and tuber crop pest/disease/nematode problems of the country, and pictorial depiction of their field symptoms with excellent photographs. Management of plantation, spice and tuber crop pests have been dealt in detail using regulatory, physical, cultural, chemical, biological methods, host resistance and integrated pest management.
This book will serve as a field guide for all those engaged in diagnosing plantation, spice and tuber crop pest problems in field and their management. It can also serve as a practical guide to practicing farmers of plantation, spice and tuber crops. Further, it is a useful reference to policy makers, research and extension workers and students. The material can also be used for teaching under-graduate and post-graduate courses in crop protection.