Biocontrol Potential of Metarhizium anisopliae (Metsch.) Sorokin (Deuteromycotina: Hyphomycetes) against Ailanthus Defoliator, Eligma narcissus (Cram.)


  • N.S. Bai
  • T.O. Sasidharan
  • O.K. Remadevi
  • P. Dharmarajan



Eligma narcissus is recognised as a serious pest of Ailanthus in Southern India and defoliation of Ailanthus by this pest causes apparent loss of growth increment. The common control methods for this pest is mostly insecticides and the concern about the environmental effects of chemical insecticides, has emphasised the use of environmentally more benign microbial agents. Among entomopathogens, Fungi are the most explored and often act as important natural control agents that limit insect populations. On this point of view, Bio efficacy of 25 isolates of Metarhizium anisopliae was assessed to establish their virulence against E. narcissus in the laboratory and effective formulations of two potent isolates were subsequently evaluated in the field. MIS7 and MIS13 were more effective among the different isolates evaluated against E. narcissus. The median lethal concentration (LC50) of all the isolates ranged from 6.46×105 conidia/ml to 628.92×105 conidia/ml. Median lethal concentration of (LT50) of 4.9 and 5.4 days were recorded for MIS7 and MIS13 respectively at a concentration of 1× 107 conidia/ml. Virulence tests of the isolates MIS7 and MIS13 and 0.5% Pongamia pinnata seed oil, individually and in different combinations, indicated improved efficacy of the isolates when used in combination and also when combined with seed oil. Formulations composed of “MIS7+MIS13+0.5% Pongamia pinnata seed oil” and “MIS7+MIS13” proved to be superior against E. narcissus, causing 76.30% and 93.93% mortality, respectively. Field evaluation of the formulation MIS7+MIS13+0.5% Pongamia pinnata seed oil recorded 5.79 larvae per plant resulting in 60.53% reduction of infestation while the formulation, MIS7+MIS13 showed 53.76% reduction of infestation with 6.56 larvae per plant. The observations from this study suggest the prospects of using the entomopathogenic fungus, M. anisopliae for the control of E. narcissus.

Author Biography

N.S. Bai

Department of Forestry and Environment Science University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka




How to Cite

Bai, N., Sasidharan, T., Remadevi, O., & Dharmarajan, P. (2015). Biocontrol Potential of Metarhizium anisopliae (Metsch.) Sorokin (Deuteromycotina: Hyphomycetes) against Ailanthus Defoliator, Eligma narcissus (Cram.). Journal of Tropical Forestry and Environment, 5(1).