Laboratory Rearing of the Legume Pod Borer, Maruca vitrata Fabricius (Lepidoptera:Pyralidae) on Mung Bean Sprouts
The suitability of mung bean sprouts (Vigna mungo (L.) Hepper) as a diet to rear larvae of Maruca vitrata Fabricius was tested for the first time in laboratory. Its effect on the growth and development of the pest was also determined for two generations. Survival of larvae was high (>87%) on sprout diet in both generations (F1 and F2) but low (52.5%) when reared on fresh bean flowers and pods (F1). The average lifespan of F2 males and females from sprout diet was 11.5 days and 13.6 days respectively. The F1 female from sprout diet was more fecund (241.3 eggs/female) than that from flowers and pods (127.5 eggs/female) and the F2 female was most fecund (359.4 eggs/female). One kilogram of dry mung bean seeds can yield up to 1200 pupae. A novel and cheap method to rear M. vitrata on mung bean sprouts was developed for a regular supply of eggs, larvae, pupae and adult moths for research purposes.
Key words: Maruca vitrata, mung bean sprout, larval diet