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Sugarcane Early Shoot Borer


(Chilo infuscatellus)
Sugarcane Early Shoot Borer

Adult moth : Straw coloured fore-wings and whitish hind wings with apical light buff areas, wing-span 25-40mm. Larvae : 20mm long, white and mottled with brown when fully grown.

Life Cycle

Eggs (240, scale-like, overlapping) laid in 3-5 rows in masses of 4-100. Larvae hatch after 3-8 days and pupate after 22-45 days. Adults emerge after a pupation of 6-18 days.


Serious pest of sugarcane : larvae feed on the central whorl of leaves, which dries up forming dead heart. Crop yields can fall by 70% in cases of heavy infestation.