A Global Perspective of Rice Brown Planthopper Management III - Strategies for BPH Management  

N.V. Krishnaiah
Principal Scientist (Retired), Directorate of Rice Research, Rajendranagr, Hyderabad-500030, INDIA
Author    Correspondence author
Rice Genomics and Genetics, 2014, Vol. 5, No. 1   doi: 10.5376/rgg.2014.05.0001
Received: 05 May, 2014    Accepted: 09 Jun., 2014    Published: 30 Jun., 2014
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Preferred citation for this article:
N.V. Krishnaiah, 2014, A Global Perspective of Rice Brown Planthopper Management III - Strategies for BPH Management, Rice Genomics and Genetics, Vol 5, No.1, 1-11 (doi: 10.5376/rgg.2014.05.0001)
Rice Brown Plant hopper, Nilaparvata lugens (Stal) (BPH) management strategy at present involves traditional approaches like, Using Resistant Varieties, Cultural Management andUse of Insecticides.Natural Biological Control is considered only in delaying insecticide application at favorable times and Use of Bio-Agents is non-existent. Varietal resistance could not achieve desired results due toinefficient and inadequate screening and breeding techniques presently employed to transfer highly complex multi-gene multi QTL based trait. This can possibly be improved by following traditional approach of screening and selecting plants directly under field conditions. Leaving alley-ways, optimum nitrogen application, optimum plant population are largely followed in many countries. New possibilities by changing the rice planting design can be experimented and exploited.Insecticide use is the major tactic followed in almost all the countries with inevitable consequences of natural enemy destruction and more importantly insecticide resistance development and pest resurgence. The scope of utilizing natural enemies as a major tactic appeared to be remote. Alien sources like lectins or Similar chemicals which can directly affect BPH,Alien organisms or the chemicals that disrupt the physiological base of Galbachina, Alien genes which can produce compounds related to insect molting hormones or juvenile hormones, in rice plants are the distant goals but worthy of initiation.After quantitative assessment of water vapor pressure and humidity on BPH, Chemicals interfering with water balance in BPH and even suitable dusts to mechanically disrupt insect body wall seem to have scope in future.
Rice; Brown plant hopper; Nilaparvata lugens; Biotypes; Long range migration; Insecticide resistance

Rice Brown Plant hopper, Nilaparvata lugens (Stal) (BPH) is a non-traditional insect pest that has risen from the most in-significant state to the most important level even threatening the rice production. Today it is considered as the number one yield limiting factor in all rice growing countries both in tropics and temperate regions. Whatever very little evidence we have today and very little imagination we could extend, strongly suggest that “niche” of BPH in dwarf varieties has reached its most optimum level due to change in micro-ecological factors, both biotic and abiotic. Lot of research efforts need to be put to understand and quantify the basic ecological factors that are responsible for survival, multiplication and perpetuation of the insect throughout the rice growing world. Extraordinary ability of BPH in long range migration clearly reveals that it is an invasive species. This makes our job still more complicated. Therefore developing basic knowledge about the pest should be an integral part of our whole BPH management strategy.
So far, traditional approaches like 1) Using Resistant Varieties 2) Natural Biological Control and Use of Bio-Agents 3) Cultural Management 4) Use of Insecticides were largely utilized. But these did not give sufficient solace to the crying rice farmer so far. Hence Non-Traditional Approaches need to be given more importance in future along with improving the performance of traditional approaches.
After 1970, when BPH has started becoming a major menace in all tropical rice growing countries, attempts were made to identify the sources of resistance to the pest.Simultaneously rice scientists tried to incorporate resistance in agronomicallycapable varieties at IRRI and many other countries including India. But,even after 44 years there are no resistant varieties evolved which could with stand the pest attack under farmers’ conditions. If at all some varieties were released they could not stand for more than one or two years. Finally varietal resistance could notplay a role in minimizing insecticide application. Let us analyze to understand the possible reasons.
Since 1970 more than fifty thousand germplasm  have been screened at IRRI for resistance to BPH and 15.4% , 1.9% and 1.8% of them were found resistant to biotypes 1, 2, 3 respectively (Brar et al.,2009). From 1973 mass screening of germplasm has been initiated at Directorate Of Rice Research, Hyderabad, India (Kalode and Khrishna,1979). More than 300 Cultivars showing high level of resistance to BPH in greenhouse tests were identified. IR26 was resistant to BPH in the Philippines and several other countries was  susceptible in India, and in Sri Lanka.A number of varieties like ARC 6650, ARC 7080, ARC 10550, ARC 14636, etc. Which exhibited high level of resistance to BPH in India showed clear susceptibility for the 3 biotypes at I.R.R.I.(Kalode and Khrishna, 1979). Thus the concept of natural existence of biotypes was visualized.
In spite of tremendous efforts by rice breeders all over India only few instances of BPH resistant varieties could become practical. IET 6314 and IET 6315 were first varieties from DRR. IET 6315 had good level of resistance but did not have good yield potential. So it could not find acceptance with farmers. IET 6314 was good yielder and released in Tamil Nadu as CO-42. But it succumbed to BPH attack with in the same season of release under farmers conditions. Later IET 7575 was released. But it was not accepted by farmers because of difficulty in grain thresh-ability. Almost similar situation occurred in Philippines and other tropical rice growing countries including the tropical China.
International symposium on plant hoppers conducted at IRRI during 2009 reveals detailed account on BPH varietal resistance.
Twenty one genes conferring resistance to BPH were so far identified in rice. In addition a number of QTLs present in various rice chromosomes were also identified for different biotypes in various countries (Braret al., 2009).
A brief account of complexity of interactions between the insect and the host plant can be described as follows:
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