Influence of Cowpea/Maize Mixture on Generalists Predators and Their Effect on Population Density of the Legume Flower Thrips, Megalurothrips Sjostedti Trybom (Thysanoptera:Thripidae)

  • S. Kyamanywa
  • C. W. Baliddawa
  • E. Omolo
Research Article


The effect of mixed cropping cow pea with maize on general predators’ abundance and their influence on population density of Megalurothrips sjostedti (Trybom) on cowpeas was investigated in the field and in exclusion cages. Populations of predatory ladybird beetles, Orius sp. and earwigs (Dermaptera) were not significantly influenced by mixed cropping. The density of spiders, however, was significantly higher in the cowpea sole crop than in the cowpea/maize mixture. The population density of M. sjostedti was significantly less in the cowpea/maize mixture than in cowpea sole crop, both inside cages, where predators were excluded, and outside. We concluded that this reduced population density was not the result of enhanced predators’ population in the mixture.

Key Words

Mixed cropping legume flower thrips Megalurothrips sjostedti cowpeas maize predators 


L’effet de la culture mixte des doliques avec le mais sur l’abondance de Megalurothrips sjostedti Trybom et ses prédateurs sur les doliques a été étudié dans le champ et dans des cages d’exclusion. Les populations prédatrices de coccinelles, Orius sp. et de perce-oreilles (Dermaptera) n’ont pas été influencées de façon significative par la culture mixte. La densité d’araignées, néanmoins, était de façon significative plus grande dans les cultures de doliques seules que dans le mélanges doliques/maïs. La densité de population de M. sjostedti était de façon significative moins grande dans le mélange doliques/maïs que dans les doliques seules, aussi bien à l’intérieur des cages où les prédateurs étaient exclus, qu’à l’extérieur. Pourtant, cette densité réduite de population n’était à l’évidence pas le résultat d’une population accrue de prédateurs dans le mélange.


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Copyright information

© ICIPE 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Kyamanywa
    • 1
  • C. W. Baliddawa
    • 2
  • E. Omolo
    • 1
  1. 1.The International Centre of Insect Physiology and EcologyNairobiKenya
  2. 2.Department of Crop ScienceMakerere UniversityKampalaUganda

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