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Farmers Warned Against Wrong Dosages Of Pesticides As African Army Worms Spread

A farmer at Kyampologoma village pointing at maize plant which has been attacked by the African Army worm

 

Farmers in Luwero district have been warned against wrong dosages of pesticides as they struggle to contain the fast spread of African Army worms in their gardens.

 

The African Army worms were first detected in Luwero at the farm belonging to Bugema University on March 26th this year.

 

The African Armyworms have now spread to five sub-counties and two town councils in the district. The invasive worm has destroyed crops and pasture in sub-counties that include Zirobwe, Kalagala, Makulubita, Butuntumula, and Luwero sub-counties. They have ravaged gardens in Busiika and Kamira town councils

 

However, as farmers struggle to fight the pests, it has emerged that some pesticides are not effective, other crops suffered adverse effects and farmers registered re-occurrence of outbreaks.

 

Fred Musisi Lugemwa, the Buwanuka Parish Councillor at Kamira town council says that the African Fall Armyworms attacked gardens in Buwanuka, Nakawomeka and Nadangira zones forcing them to buy several pesticides to kill them in vain.

 

Musisi says that there are fears that pesticides on markets could be fake and they now want the government to donate them free genuine pesticides.

 

Siraje Mbowa another affected person at Kabunyata village says that they have run out of money trying to buy different pesticides to kill the pests in vain.

 

But Wilberforce Ssemigga the Luwero District Agriculture officer has cautioned farmers against buying pesticides from unlicensed agro-chemicals dealers and using wrong dosages to fight the armyworms.

 

Ssemigga explained that the recommended pesticides which include cypermethrin and profenofos are effective in killing the pests if used in the right doses. He explained that a farmer needs to apply 2mls per litre of water or use 500 ml per acre if these the pesticides are to kill the African Army Worms.

 

Ssemigga however warned farmers against applying above or below the recommended dosages saying these may cause adverse effects including killing plants or failing to kill the pesticides.

 

Ssemigga noted that the Ministry of Agriculture has donated 50 litres of cypermethrin and profenofos which they will distribute to sub-county agriculture officers to carry out the demonstration on how to fight the pests.

 

African Army worms have also been reported in Nakaseke, Mityana, Wakiso ,Namutumba, Kiryandongo, Kumi and Serer.Others are Bugiri,Katakwi, Busia ,Bukedea, and Bugweri among others.

-URN

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