An experiment was conducted in 2004 to assess the major pests associated with stored maize, the damage and losses they cause in Jimma Zone, Oromia Regional State. Fifty farm stores were assessed. Seventeen arthropods, thirteen Coleopterans, three Lepidopterans and one Acarina were documented from the samples collected. Maize weevil (Sitophilus zeamais) followed by grain moth (Sitotroga cereallela), rice weevil (Sitophilus oryzae) and flour beetle (Tribolium confusum) were the major pests of stored maize in the study area. A major finding of the experiment was that a storage pests particularly, S. zeamais is the dominant and most important pest of maize in Jimma Zone. This pest was found in abundance in all areas assessed damaging maize grain. Farmers want to store maize grain for food security, seed, and to sell when the prices are high enough. However, this pest is a major challenge. Quantitative average grain damage of 64.50% and losses of 41 to 80% are common in the store within three to six months after storage. It is recommended that an integrated weevil management method should be implemented to prevent the high quantitative and qualitative grain losses incurred so as to contribute towards family food security in Jimma Zone.
Key words: Storage pests, pest status, Sitophilus zeamais, grain damage, grain loss.
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