To identify the alternate host plants of the groundnut sucking bug (Rhyparochromus littoralis Dist.) an emerging field insect pest of groundnut in the Sudan Savannah Agro-ecological zone of Nigeria, field experiment was carried out over a period of five (5) years (2011 to 2016) in order to investigate the behavior of R. littoralis with the aim of developing a strategic control method for this insect pest. The study established R. littoralis to be a seasonal pest of groundnut that manifests in high density during the months of September to November causing significant loss to cultivated groundnuts in the field and thereafter, disappears until another harvest period. It was observed that, apart from groundnut, R. littoralis depended on other plants over-season for the sustenance of its life cycle, where it sucks sap from the plant, pods or fruits. Prominent crops found to be a haven for the over-seasoning for this insect pest included, cowpea, maize, guinea corn and sesame, while a significant percentage were found under the bark-shelves of live-shea tree. This study therefore recommended serious sanitation measures and good cultural practices of field maintenance to curb the rapid multiplication of this insect pest.
Key words: Alternate host, strategy, over-seasoning, sucking bug, insects, population.
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