Response of maize and its pest Chilo partellus to ozone and carbon dioxide exposure


In the present study, the direct effect of ozone (O3) and carbon dioxide (CO2) exposure on growth and yield of maize (var HQPM 1) and the indirect effect on development of its herbivore pest Chilo partellus were investigated. Maize crop was exposed to different concentrations of O3 and CO2 in open top chambers (OTCs). During the exposure, maize plants at the early vegetative stage were incubated with C. partellus eggs. Changes in biomass and yield of maize plants with and without Chilo infestation under O3 and CO2 exposure were monitored. Indirect effects of O3 and CO2 on maize pest were monitored with respect to release and survival of larvae, mean body weight of ἀfth instar stage larvae and emergence of adults from pupae. Higher reductions in aboveground and belowground biomass were observed in maize plants with pest with respect to plants without pest during O3 and CO2 exposure. Maximum and minimum reductions in aboveground (39.5% and 4.7%) and belowground biomass (43.0% and 5.4%) were observed in maize plants grown under O3 and CO2 treatments, respectively. Reduction in yield varied from 33.8% to 15.2% for maize plants grown under different treatments as compared to plants grown under low O3 conditions. Signiἀcant changes in development of C. partellus, fed on tissues of maize plants exposed to different treatments were observed. Moreover, the mean body weight of larvae decreased with increasing O3 concentrations. Mean body weight was 62% higher and 65% lower for larvae fed on maize plant tissue exposed to CO2 and CO2+EO3, respectively, as compared to maize plants grown under low O3 conditions. Development of male and female adults from pupae was observed only from larvae isolated from ambient and CO2 treated maize plants. The present study showed that the exposure of maize crop to O3 and CO2 and its pest C. partellus, adversely affected not only maize growth and yield but also development of C. partellus. This study suggests that predicting the outcome of O3 and CO2 on crop-insect pest interactions will require comprehensive examination of behavioural growth of both harmful and beneἀcial insects of the agro-ecosystem.


CO2; O3; maize; Chilo partellus

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Maydica - A journal devoted to maize and allied species

ISSN: 2279-8013