An Outbreak of Sorghum Ergot in Parts of Andhra Pradesh, India
Nageswara Rao, T. G.
Tooley, P. W.
This paper reports the incidence and severity of ergot infection (Claviceps sorghi) on sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) on 28 farms in districts of Mahbubnagar and Ranga Reddy in Andhra Pradesh during an ergot epidemic in 2000 - 2001. Cultivars sown were local Yellow Jowar, local White Jowar and ICSV 745 as dual purpose sorghums, and SSG 777 and SSG 878 for fodder. In most villages, the sorghum crop had high incidence and severity (up to 100%) of ergot infection. The source of the epidemic was suggested to be the storage of infected panicles from previous years or the movement of contaminated seed from one village to another. Pathogen development was favoured by cloudy weather and high rainfall during flowering; one village 80 km from the epidemic had no rain during flowering and no incidence of ergot.