This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of Aspergillus species on acridid populations which are major agricultural pests of rice, sugarcane, wheat, maize and fodder crops in Pakistan. Three and replicates i.e. Aspergillus flavus, A. fumigatus and A. niger, excluding the control, were held under laboratory conditions. It was observed that consumption faecal production of acridids was significantly reduced after the pathogenic application of Aspergillus. In the control replicate, the mortality ratio for stage (N4-N6) was maximum on day 2nd i.e. [F10.7 = 18.33, P < 0.05] followed by [F4.20 = 07.85, P < 0.05] and [F3.77 = 06.11, P < 0.05] on 4th and 3rd day, respectively. Similarly, it was a minimum i.e. [F0.48 = 84.65, P < 0.05] on the 1st day. It was also noted that faecal production of Acridid nymphs was not significantly affected when treated with conidial concentration in H2O formulation; however, it was significantly reduced after the contamination with conidial concentration in oil. The high morality of acridids after contamination of Aspergillus supports their use as bio-control agent for reducing pest population. The present study recommends that exploration and screening must be conducted to provide additional pathogens for evaluation as potential biological control against grasshoppers and locusts.
The main objective of any irrigation program is the development of an efficient water management system to sustain crop growth and development and avoid physiological water stress in the growing plants. Field experiment to evaluate the effects of some soil moisture conservation practices on yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of maize was carried out in three locations (i.e. Mubi and Yola in the northern Guinea Savannah and Ganye in the southern Guinea Savannah of Adamawa State, Nigeria) during the dry seasons of 2013 and 2014. The experiment consisted of three different irrigation levels (7, 10 and 12 day irrigation intervals), two levels of mulch (mulch and un-mulched) and two tillage practices (no tillage and minimum tillage) arranged in a randomized complete block design with split-split plot arrangement and replicated three times. The Blaney-Criddle method was used for measuring crop evapotranspiration. The results indicated that seven-day irrigation intervals and mulched treatment were found to have significant effect (P>0.05) on grain yield and water use efficiency in all the locations. The main effect of tillage was non-significant (P<0.05) on grain yield and WUE. The interaction effects of irrigation and mulch were significant (P>0.05) on grain yield and WUE at Mubi and Yola. Generally, higher grain yield and WUE were recorded on mulched and seven-day irrigation intervals, whereas lower values were recorded on un-mulched with 12-day irrigation intervals. Tillage exerts little influence on the yield and WUE. Results from Ganye were found to be generally higher than those recorded in Mubi and Yola; it also showed that an irrigation interval of 10 days with mulching could be adopted for the Ganye area, while seven days interval is more appropriate for Mubi and Yola.
Two-wheel tractor (power tiller) is a common tillage tool in Bangladesh agriculture for easy access in fragmented land with affordable price of small farmers. Traditional maize sheller needs to be carried from place to place by hooking with two-wheel tractor (2WT) and set up again for shelling operation which takes longer time for preparation of maize shelling. The mobile maize sheller eliminates the transportation problem and can start shelling operation instantly any place as it is attached together with 2WT. It is counterclockwise rotating cylinder, axial flow type sheller, and grain separated with a frictional force between spike tooth and concave. The maize sheller is attached with nuts and bolts in front of the engine base of 2WT. The operating power of the sheller comes from the fly wheel of the engine of the tractor through ‘V” belt pulley arrangement. The average shelling capacity of the mobile sheller is 2.0 t/hr, broken kernel 2.2%, and shelling efficiency 97%. The average maize shelling cost is Tk. 0.22/kg and traditional custom hire rate is Tk.1.0/kg, respectively (1 US$=Tk.78.0). The service provider of the 2WT can transport the mobile maize sheller long distance in operator’s seating position. The manufacturers started the fabrication of mobile maize sheller. This mobile maize sheller is also compatible for the other countries where 2WT is available for farming operation.
This experiment was conducted for 8 weeks to evaluate the growth performance and economics of pullets fed on different dietary energy sources. A total of 300 Harco black was used for this experiment. The birds were completely randomized and divided into four diet treatment groups. Each treatment group had three replicates of twenty-five birds per replicate. Four diets containing maize, spaghetti, noodles, and biscuit was formulated to represent diet 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively. Diet 1 containing maize is the control, while diet 2, 3, and 4 contains spaghetti, noodles, and biscuit waste meal at 100% replacement for maize on weight for weight basis. Performance indices on Feed intake, body weight, weight gain, feed conversion ratio (FCR) and economy of production were measured. Blood samples were also collected for heamatology and serum biochemistry assessment. The result of the experiment indicated that different dietary energy source fed to birds significantly (P < 0.05) affect feed intake, body weight, weight gain, and feed conversion ratio (FCR). The best cost of feed per kilogram of body weight gain was obtained in Spaghetti based diet (₦559.30). However, the best performance were obtained from diet 1(maize), it can be concluded that spaghetti as a replacement for maize in diet of pullet is most economical and profitable for production without any deleterious effects attached. Blood parameters of birds were not significantly (p > 0.05) influenced by the use of the dietary energy sources used in this experiment.
The study was designed to examine the barriers to marital expectations among unmarried persons with hearing impairment in Oyo State, Nigeria. Descriptive survey research design was adopted. Purposive sampling technique was used to select one hundred participants made up forty-four (44) males and fifty-six (56) females, all with varying degrees of hearing impairment. Eight research questions were raised and answered. The instrument used was Marital Expectations Scale with reliability coefficient of 0.86. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics tools of frequency count and simple percentage as well as inferential statistics tools of T-TEST and ANOVA. The findings revealed that there was a significant relationship existing among the main identified barriers (environmental barrier, communication barrier, hearing loss, unemployment and poor sexuality education) to the marital expectations of unmarried persons with hearing impairment. The joint contribution of the independent variables (identified barriers) to the dependent variable (marital expectations) was significant, F = 5.842, P < 0.05, accounting for about 89% of the variance. The relative contribution of the identified barriers to marital expectations of unmarried persons with hearing impairment is as follows: environmental barrier (β = 0.808, t = 5.176, P < 0.05), communication barrier (β = 0.533, t = 3.305, P < 0.05), hearing loss (β = 0.550, t = 2.233, P < 0.05), unemployment (β = 0.431, t = 2.102, P < 0.05), poor sexuality education (β = 0.361, t = 1.985, P < 0.05). Environmental barrier proved to be the most potent contributor to the poor marital expectations among unmarried persons with hearing impairment. Therefore, it is recommended that society dismantles the nagging environmental barrier through positive identification with individuals suffering from hearing impairment. In this connection, members of society should change their negative attitudes and do away with all the wrong notions about the marital ability of individuals with hearing impairment.
The physical properties of nine Nigerian staple food flours related to bulk handling and processing were investigated following standard procedures. The results showed that the moisture content, bulk density, angle of repose, water absorption capacity, swelling index, dispersability, pH and wettability of the flours ranged from 9.95 to 11.98%, 0.44 to 0.66 g/cm3, 31.43 to 39.65o, 198.3 to 291.7 g of water/100 g of sample, 5.53 to 7.63, 60.3 to 73.8%, 4.43 to 6.70, and 11 to 150 s. The particle size analysis of the flour samples indicated significant differences (p<0.05). The least gelation concentration of the flour samples ranged from 6 to 14%. The colour of the flours fell between light and saturated, with the exception of cassava, millet and maize flours which appear dark and dull. The properties of food flours depend largely on the inherent property of the food material and may influence their functional behaviour as food materials.
This study aims at describing the expenditure pattern of households on millet, maize and sorghum across income groups in Nasarawa State. A multi-stage sampling technique was used to select a sample size of 316 respondents for the study. The Almost Ideal Demand System (AIDS) model was adopted in this study. Results from the study shows that the average household size was five persons with dependency ratio of 52 %, which plays an important role on the household’s expenditure pattern by increasing the household budget share. On the average 82 % were male headed households with an average age of 49 years and 13 years of formal education. Results on expenditure share show that maize has the highest expenditure share of 38 % across the three income groups and that most of the price effects are significantly different from zero at 5 % significant level. This shows that the low price of maize increased its demand as compared to other cereals. Household size and age of household members are major factors affecting the demand for cereals in the study. This agrees with the fact that increased household population (size) will bring about increase consumption. The results on factors influencing preferences for cereal grains reveals that cooking quality and appearance (65.7 %) were the most important factors affecting the demand for maize in the study area. This study recommends that cereal crop production should be prioritized in government policies and farming activities that help to boost food security and alleviate poverty should be subsidized.
The aim of the present study was to examine whether increasing molybdenum (Mo) concentration affects the growth and Mo concentration of maize (Zea mays L. cv Norma SC) and sunflower (Helianthus annuus L. cv Arena PR) seedlings within laboratory conditions. In this experiment, calcareous chernozem soil was used and Mo was supplemented into the soil as ammonium molybdate [(NH4)6Mo7O24.4H2O] in four different concentrations as follow: 0 (control), 30, 90 and 270 mg·kg-1. In this study, we found that molybdenum in small amount (30 mg·kg-1) affects positively on growth of maize and sunflower seedlings, however, higher concentration of Mo reduces the dry weights of shoots and roots. In the case of maize the highest Mo treatment (270 mg·kg-1) and in sunflower 90 mg·kg-1 treatment caused significant reduction in plant growth. In addition, we observed that molybdenum contents in the roots and shoots were very low in case of control soil but were significantly elevated with increasing concentration of Mo treatment. Only in case of sunflower the highest 270 mg·kg-1 Mo treatment caused decrease in Mo concentration.
Specific leaf area (SLA; cm2leaf g-1leaf) the ratio of leaf area to leaf dry mass is a key ecophysiological parameter influencing leaf physiology, photosynthesis, and whole plant carbon gain and also can be used as a rapid and diagnostic tool. In this study, two species of soluble inorganic selenium forms, selenite (Se^IV) and selenate (Se^VI) at different concentrations were investigated on maize plants that were growing in nutrient solutions during 2 weeks and at the end of the experiment, amounts of SLA for first and second leaves of maize were measured. In accordance with the results we observed that our regarded Se concentrations in both forms of Se^IV and Se^VI were not effective on maize plants’ SLA significantly although high level of 3 mg.kg-1 Se^IV had negative affect on growth of the samples that had been treated by it but about Se^VI samples we did not observe this state and our different considered Se^VI concentrations were not toxic for maize plants.
The performance of box-type solar cookers has been reported by several researchers but little attention was paid to the effect of the type of insulation material on the energy and exergy efficiency of these cookers. This research aimed at evaluating the energy and exergy efficiencies of the box-type cookers containing different insulation materials. Energy and exergy efficiencies of five box-type solar cookers insulated with maize cob, air (control), maize husk, coconut coir and polyurethane foam respectively were obtained over a period of three years. The cookers were evaluated using water heating test procedures in determining the energy and exergy analysis. The results were subjected to statistical analysis using ANOVA. The result shows that the average energy input for the five solar cookers were: 245.5, 252.2, 248.7, 241.5 and 245.5J respectively while their respective average energy losses were: 201.2, 212.7, 208.4, 189.1 and 199.8J. The average exergy input for five cookers were: 228.2, 234.4, 231.1, 224.4 and 228.2J respectively while their respective average exergy losses were: 223.4, 230.6, 226.9, 218.9 and 223.0J. The energy and exergy efficiency was highest in the cooker with coconut coir (37.35 and 3.90% respectively) in the first year but was lowest for air (11 and 1.07% respectively) in the third year. Statistical analysis showed significant difference between the energy and exergy efficiencies over the years. These results reiterate the importance of a good insulating material for a box-type solar cooker.
Cover or catch crops have beneficial effects for soil, water, erosion, etc. If harvested, they also provide feedstock for biogas without competition for arable land in regions, where only one main crop can be produced per year. On average gross energy yields of approx. 1300 m³ methane (CH4) ha-1 can be expected from 4.5 tonnes (t) of cover crop dry matter (DM) in Austria. Considering the total energy invested from cultivation to compression for biofuel use a net energy yield of about 1000 m³ CH4 ha-1 is remaining. With the straw of grain maize or Corn Cob Mix (CCM) similar energy yields can be achieved. In comparison to catch crops remaining on the field as green manure or to complete fallow between main crops the effects on soil, water and climate can be improved if cover crops are harvested without soil compaction and digestate is returned to the field in an amount equivalent to cover crop removal. In this way, the risk of nitrate leaching can be reduced approx. by 25% in comparison to full fallow. The risk of nitrous oxide emissions may be reduced up to 50% by contrast with cover crops serving as green manure. The effects on humus content and erosion are similar or better than those of cover crops used as green manure when the same amount of biomass was produced. With higher biomass production the positive effects increase even if cover crops are harvested and the only digestate is brought back to the fields. The ecological footprint of arable farming can be reduced by approx. 50% considering the substitution of natural gas with CH4 produced from cover crops.
Maize constitutes a major agrarian production for use by the vast population but despite its economic importance; it has not been produced to meet the economic needs of the country. Achieving optimum yield in maize can meaningfully be supported by land suitability analysis in order to guarantee self-sufficiency for future production optimization. This study examines land suitability for maize production through the analysis of the physicochemical variations in soil properties and other land attributes over space using a Geographic Information System (GIS) framework. Physicochemical parameters of importance selected include slope, landuse, physical and chemical properties of the soil, and climatic variables. Landsat imagery was used to categorize the landuse, Shuttle Radar Topographic Mapping (SRTM) generated the slope and soil samples were analyzed for its physical and chemical components. Suitability was categorized into highly, moderately and marginally suitable based on Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) classification, using the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) technique of GIS. This result can be used by small scale farmers for efficient decision making in the allocation of land for maize production.
A field experiment was carried out at Arab El- Awammer Research Station, Agric. Res. Center. Assiut Governorate during summer seasons of 2013 and 2014. The present study assessed the effect of cowpea with maize intercropping on yield and its components. The experiment comprised of three treatments (sole cowpea, sole maize and cowpea-maize intercrop). The experimental design was a randomized complete block with four replications. Results indicated that intercropped maize plants with cowpea, exhibited greater potentiality and resulted in higher values of most of the studied criteria viz., plant height, number of ears/plant, number of rows/ear, number of grains/row, grains weight/ear, 100–grain weight and straw and grain yields. Fresh and dry forage yields of cowpea were lower in intercropping with maize than sole. Furthermore, the combined of the two seasons revealed that the total Land Equivalent Ratio (LER) between cowpea and maize was 1.65. The Aggressivity (A) maize was 0.45 and cowpea was -0.45. This showed that maize was the dominant crop, whereas cowpea was the dominated. The Competitive Ratio (CR) indicated that maize more competitive than cowpea, maize was 1.75 and cowpea was 0.57. The Actual Yield Loss (AYL) maize was 0.05 and cowpea was -0.40. The Monetary Advantage Index (MAI) was 2360.80.
The effect of tillage technology of maize on intensity of weed infestation and weed species composition was observed at experimental field. Maize is grown consecutively since 2001. The experimental site is situated at an altitude of 230 m above sea level in the Czech Republic. Variants of tillage technology are CT: plowing – conventional tillage 0.22 m, MT: loosening – disc tillage on the depth of 0.1 – 0.12 m, NT: direct sowing – without tillage. The evaluation of weed infestation was carried out by numerical method in years 2012 and 2013. Within the monitoring were found 20 various species of weeds. Conventional tillage (CT) primarily supports the occurrence of perennial weeds (Cirsium arvense, Convolvulus arvensis). Late spring species (Chenopodium album, Echinochloa crus-galli) were more frequently noticed on variants of loosening (MT) and direct sowing (NT). Different tillage causes a significant change of weed species spectrum in maize.
The research was set up on chernozem soil at the Látókép AGTC MÉK research area of the University of Debrecen in Hungary. We examined the yield, the yield production per 1kg NPK fertilizer and the water and nutrient utilization of hybrid PR37N01 and PR37M81 in 2013. We found that PR37N01 produced the most yield at the level of N120+P (17,476kg ha-1) while PR37M81 reached the highest yield at level N150+PK (16,754kg ha-1). Studies related to yield production per 1kg NPK indicated that the best results were achieved at level N30+PK compared to the control treatment. Yield production per 1kg NPK was17.6kg kg-1 by P37N01 and 44.2kg kg-1 by PR37M81. By comparing the water utilization of hybrids we found that the worst water utilization results were reached in the control treatment (PR37N01: 26.2kg mm-1, PR37M81: 19.5kg mm-1). The best water utilization values were produced at level N120+PK in the case of hybrid PR37N01 (32.1kg mm-1) and at N150+PK in the case of hybrid PR37M81 (30.8kg mm-1). We established the values of the nutrient reaction and the fertilizer optimum of hybrids. We discovered a strong relationship between the amount of fertilizer applied and the yield produced (r2= 0.8228–0.9515). The best nutrient response was induced by hybrid PR37N01, while the weakest results were reached by hybrid PR37M81.
The goal of presented work is the development phytoremediation method targeted to cleaning environment polluted with organochlorine pesticides, based on joint application of plants and microorganisms. For this aim the selection of plants and microorganisms with corresponding capabilities towards three organochlorine pesticides (Lindane, DDT and PCP) has been carried out.
The tolerance of plants to tested pesticides and induction degree of plant detoxification enzymes by these compounds have been used as main criteria for estimating the applicability of plants in proposed technology. Obtained results show that alfalfa, maize and soybean among tested six plant species have highest tolerance to pesticides.
As a result of screening, more than 30 strains from genera Pseudomonas have been selected. As a result of GC analysis of incubation area, 11 active cultures for investigated pesticides are carefully chosen.
Several yield-based stress indices have been developed that may be more applicable to work on drought tolerance. In this study, we investigate possibility of using stress susceptibility index (SSI), tolerance index (TOL), yield stability index (YSI), yield index (YI), stress tolerance index (STI), geometric mean productivity (GMP), harmonic mean (HARM), mean productivity (MP) to identify genotypic performance of some maize cultivars under normal and stressed condition. The results indicate that it was possible to identify superior genotypes for drought tolerance based on their stress indices and generally SSI indices which showed the lowest negative correlation with dry matter yield can be used as the best index for maize breeding programs to introduce drought tolerant hybrids. It was found that SC 647 showed the best behavior under drought stress condition based on TOL and SSI. A higher STI, GMP, and HARM values were attained for ko6. It can be suggested that ko6 should be cultivated in moderate stressful environment of Iran.