Ms Vongai Paradza

PhD student


Zoology and Entomology
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Primary Supervisor
Yusuf Abdullahi Ahmed

Whiteflies such as Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) and Trialeurodes vaparariorum (Westwood) are key constraints to the productivity of vegetables such as tomato and French bean in Africa. Management of these pests is largely by use of pesticides, but with little benefit as whiteflies are highly resistant to various classes of pesticides. Cryptic feeding behavior of the pest and presence of cuticular waxes also hinders access by contact pesticides resulting in high dependence on systemic insecticides which have negative environmental effects. Entomopathogenic and endophytic fungal biopesticides targeting the adult and nymphal stages of whiteflies can be effective alternatives to pesticides in the management of whiteflies. The project will focus on screening and identifying effective entomopathogenic and endophytic fungal isolates, development of effective formulations as well as innovative application strategies for effective management of whiteflies infesting vegetables.