DA creates rice crop protection task force to look into diseases and pests affecting rice

July 5, 2009 10:53 pm 

ILOILO CITY, July 6 -– The Department of Agriculture-Regional Field Unit 6 (DA-RFU 6) has created a task force that will look into pests and diseases affecting rice production, which is the top commodity in Western Visayas.

DA-RFU regional executive director Larry Nacionales said the creation of the Rice Crop Protection Task Force is part of their preparations because the months of June and July are considered to be critical.

The continuous rain that happens during the said months creates an environment that is very conducive to the growth of pests.

Chaired by Nacionales, the monitoring will be spearheaded by Regional Crop Protection Center (RCPC) with the support of the agency’s information officers and local government unit technicians.

Among those that are being monitored are the rice tungro virus (RTV) and the possible emergence of rice black bug (RBB).

According to Nacionales, the cases of RTV are sporadic unlike in the 1980s when it was first monitored here.

The virus was monitored in several barangays in Pototan, Mina Dingle, San Dionision, Sara and Barotac Viejo in Iloilo; Mambusao, Cuartero, Dao and Jamindan in Capiz and Malinao in Aklan.

Nacionales said that about 20 hectares have been affected in Iloilo and some 17 hectares in Capiz.

He also said that the agency contained the RBB in affected rice farms of northern Iloilo years ago. (PNA)

FFC/ajp/PGL/vlo

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