Maize is a major staple food and feed source for millions of people of Ethiopia. However, insect pests are among the most important biotic constraints of it in storage. Assessment of species compositions and status of insect pests of stored maize grains in four traditional storages over three storage season was conducted in southern Ethiopia in the years 2013/2014 and 2015/2016. The assessment was made from 1 kg of samples taken from representative farmerâ€™s storages using key of books related to stored product insects. More than thirty species of arthropods were identified and recorded. Of these, nineteen were primary and secondary pests, seven were mold feeders and five were natural enemies. Among primary and secondary pests, Sitophilus zeamais, Sitotroga cerealella, Sitophilus oryzae, Tribolium castaneum, Tribolium confusum, Cryptolestes ferrugineus, Cryptolestes pusillus and Rhyzopertha dominica respectively followed by Oryzaephilus surinamensis, Tribolium destructor, Palorus subdepressus, Palorus ratzeburgii, Ephestia cautella, Plodia interpunctella and Gnatocerus cornutus were the most abundant, the most common and the most important. Of mold feeders, Carpophilus dimidiatus were the most common and the most economically important, followed by Liposcelis species and Liposcelis entomophila. However, Typhaea stercorea, Carpophilus freeman, Cimex hemipterus and Brachypeplus species were the least commonly occurred and the least important. Among natural enemies, Cheyletus species, Anisopteromalus calandrae, Cephalonomia tarsalis and Coleopteran Staphylinidea were common in terms of frequency of occurrence, while Dactylosternum abdominale was uncommon (rare). As a result, all tested traditional storage methods were infested with arthropod pests of different species and were in efficient to provide adequate protection against pests. Thus, this calls for urgent need for designing management strategies.
Keywords: Insect pests, stored maize, abundance, species composition, status.