Fungi as Biological Control Agents Against Termites

Abstract

This research dealt with the screening and bioassay of Bb1, MaBb and Fm11 strains of two fungi species, Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium anisopliae, against adult termites. The methodology was divided into two phases. The first phase enabled the researchers to find out the most virulent fungi strain. The mortality promoted by the different strains on test insect was recorded and the data were subjected to statistical treatments to determine significant treatments to determine significant differences among the effectiveness of the strains and their corresponding LD50 and LD95 values. Fm11 was found to be the most virulent strain. It was subjected to the second phase, which aimed to determine its most effective spore concentration. Four treatments with different spore concentrations were prepared and used to promote mortality of termites. Using the same statistical analyses, it was found that 1 x 108 spores/g is its most effective spore concentration.

Introduction

Once a crop has been established, populations of insects, weeds, and disease-causing organisms frequently threaten it. Annual global losses from these pests amount to 20 to 40 percent of potential production, an amount of loss that if prevented could easily make up for shortfalls in food production in food-deficit areas of the world.

Termites are one of those pests that cause substantial damage and nuisance to humans. Aside from attacking crops, they also cause wood damage, thus destroying residential and commercial buildings. The conventional method of controlling these termites is by using pesticides.

Materials & Equipment

Selected References:

Termites. Encarta Encyclopedia, 2001 Edition. CD-ROM Encarta Inc. D.R. Santiago and B.P. Gabriel998. selection of Metarhizium anisopliae Isolates for Virulence toward Four Insect Pests. In The Philippine Agriculturist 81:59-66. R.J. Milner and J.A. Staples. 1996. Biological Control of Termites: Results and Experiences within CISRO project in Australia. In Journals Oxford.

Further clarification of the procedures and results should be directed to the researchers and adviser.

Researchers:
Francis Paul Encarnacion
Kris Xandra C. Esporlas
April R. Magtibay
Danica Linda O. Mancenido
Kris Danielle P. Suarez

Adviser:
Ms. Marie Christine W. Merca
Philippine Science High School
Bicol Region Campus