Wheat rusts, stem rust, leaf rust, and stripe or yellow rust are the major biotic constraints in all wheat-growing regions of Ethiopia. Therefore, the main objective of this study is to identify the temporal-spatial hot spot pattern of wheat rust incidence and severity in Ethiopia. A GIS-based hotspot analysis tool was employed to identify the spatial distribution of hot spot patterns and temporal trends using survey data collected by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center and the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research from the fields of smallholder farmers in Ethiopia. The analysis identified seven hot spot pattern categories; no trend detected, new hot spot, consecutive hot spot, diminishing hot spot, oscillating hot spot, persistent hot spot and a sporadic hot spot for yellow and stem rusts distributed in different parts of the country. For instance, the persistent hot spot is observed in west Arsi and Bale zones, which are the potential wheat-growing areas of the country while new hot spots are emerging in central and northern parts of the country. Generally, areas where these two hot spot patterns occurred, are requiring special attention to minimize yield loss due to rust and tackle food insecurity.
Key words: Emerging hotspot, stem rust, yellow rust, leaf rust.
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