Open Access Original Research Article

Food Security Status of Artisanal Fishers and Concerns of Bycatch in Nigeria

Clementina Oluwafunke Ajayi

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-10
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/29868

There have been concerns about the part of the catch that is not the primary target of the fishing effort of artisanal fishers along their household food security status. This aimed the study to examine bycatch occurrence and usage, estimate the food security status of fishing households and highlight constraints faced by fishing households in Nigeria. Data collected from one hundred and fifty six (156) artisanal fish farmers of Lagos, Ondo and Kogi States of Nigeria between June 2015 and July 2016 were used for the analysis. The study used descriptive statistics as well as United States Household Food Security Survey Module to fulfil its objectives. The results revealed that majority (95%) of artisanal fishers indicated that introduction of a bycatch reduction device will raise the unit cost of effort and this cost increase induces a reduction in the profit maximizing level of effort and also reduces profit. 50.64% of fishing households were food secured while inadequate capital, lack of extension services, poor fishing gears, water pollution, poor value addition, poor storage facilities, unavailability of fish, lack of formal education, poor access to information, destruction of fish habitats and breeze among others were the constraints faced by artisanal fishers and the major reason they encourage bycatch. The study suggests that government should consistently give support to the extension agents and research institutes so as to give quality education to these farmers on importance of bycatch reduction; embrace effective bycatch reduction devices at minimum cost; implement proper policies that would eliminate these constraints by giving attention to the technical, social and regulatory approaches of bycatch and access to financial capital should be improved.

Open Access Original Research Article

Influence of Mulching Materials on the Growth and Yield Components of Green Pepper at Busia County in Kenya

Ocharo N. Edgar, Joseph P. Gweyi-Onyango, Nicholas K. Korir

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-10
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/29909

Aims: Green pepper (Capsicum annuum) also named the bell pepper or sweet pepper is one of the most important and remunerative vegetable crops in the world. Due to the increased pressure on land, climate change and increased demand for the crop, there is need for better agronomical practices that will ensure enough food production.

Place and Duration of Study: In Kenya, little attention has been given to the use of organic and inorganic mulch materials to increase productivity of horticultural crops and therefore this study was conducted in Alupe, Busia-Kenya, during the long and short rains season of 2015 to assess the efficacy of black plastic, transparent plastic and straw mulch on growth and yield of green pepper.

Methodology: The treatments were black polythene mulch, transparent polythene mulch, straw mulch and bare soil as the control.

Results: The straw mulch elicited significantly vigorous growth of seedlings compared to the other treatments but had the lowest number of leaves unlike transparent mulch which had the most with 58. The widest stem circumference was observed on mulched plots as well as the plant height where the control recorded the lowest height. The black polythene mulch gave significantly (P=.05) heavier fruits of 924.5 g/plant during the long rain and 681.1 g/plant in the short rain season. Unmulched plots of either variety had the lowest mass recorded for fruit in both seasons. The transparent mulch showed significantly (P=.05) more seeds per fruit (196), longest fruit length (8.5 cm) and greatest fruit diameter (9.2 cm). Based on the experimental results the black polythene mulches had greatest effects on the growth, and yield of sweet pepper and showed superior performance among the plastic mulches in the study area and therefore is recommended.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Foliar Application of Potassium and Boron on Yield and Fruit Quality of "Florida Prince" Peach Trees

Walid Fediala Abd El- Gleel Mosa, Nagwa A. Abd EL-Megeed, M. A. M. Aly, Lidia Sas Paszt

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-8
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/29539

Aims: study the effect of foliar application of potassium and boron on yield and fruit quality of "Florida Prince" peach trees.

Study Design: The treatments were applied and arranged in a randomized complete block design. Each treatment included seven replicates with one tree for each replicate.

Place and Duration of Study: This study was conducted during 2013 and 2014 seasons on "Florida Prince" Peach cultivar. The trees were at 8 years old and grafted on “Nemagard” rootstock. They were planted at 3.5 × 5 m apart and grown in sandy soil under drip irrigation system in a private orchard located at El-Nubaria, Beheira governorate, Egypt.

Methodology: Potassium sulphate with 1%, 1.5% and 2% was used in combination with + Boric acid with 0.1%, 0.2% and .05% two times at at fruit set and at the onset of coloring, in the two seasons.

Results: Our obtained results proved that potassium sulphate (2%) + boric acid (0.05%) and potassium sulphate (2%) + boric acid (0.1%) were the best combinations. They gave the highest increment in fruit yield, quality and leaf and fruit mineral content from potassium and boron in the two seasons over control or the other treatments.

Conclusion: The foliar application of potassium or boron singly has a good effect on yield and fruit quality of "Florida Prince" peach trees and by usage both of them in combination, their impact will be greater.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effects of Water Stress on the Physiological Behavior, the Flowering and the Fruiting of Jatropha curcas L. Under Semi-controlled Conditions

Ibrahima Diédhiou, Diatta Oulimata, Roger Bayala, Bassiaka Ouattara

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-12
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/29836

Jatropha curcas L (J. curcas) sectors are increasingly promoted in the Sahel for biofuel production. Though, our understandings on the species responses to water deficit particularly of mature trees are still sketchy. So, this study aims at investigating the effects of water deficit on the physiological behavior, the flowering and the fruiting of J. curcas.

The experimental design was a randomized complete block design with 6 replications and 4 treatments.

The study was conducted at the research station of the National High School of Agriculture (ENSA) located at 4 km from Thiès, Senegal. The study lasted 113 days from April 1st to July 22nd 2013.

  1. curcas trees at 21 months old, grown from seeds collected at ENSA were used for the study. The experimentation was conducted in semi-controlled conditions and the 4 treatments considered are: T0 (maximal evapotranspiration); T1 (75% of maximal evapotranspiration); T2 (20% of maximal evapotranspiration) and T3 (without watering). The crop evapotranspiration, the stomatal conductance, the leaf area index (LAI) as well as the flowering and the fruiting were monitored.

The results show that only severe water deficit (watering at 20% of maximal evapotranspiration) negatively affect the physiological traits (stomatal conductance and LAI) and the yields (fruits weight per tree and seed weight per tree) of J. curcas. However, only very harsh water deficit (watering at about 1% of maximal evapotranspiration) reduce flowering parameters (inflorescence size, number of male and female flowers). The flowering and the fruiting of J. curcas are less affected by water stress.

The experimentation concluded to a negative effect of only severe water stress on J. curcas physiological traits but fruits and seeds production are solely affected when water uptake of J. curcas declines under 20% of maximal evapotranspiration. This question must be deeply investigated trough long-term experimentation with more treatments in order to determine the threshold of water deficit at which J. curcas yield significantly declines.

Open Access Review Article

Role of Mutation Breeding in Crop Improvement- Past, Present and Future

Aamir Raina, Rafiul Amin Laskar, Shahnawaz Khursheed, Ruhul Amin, Younas Rasheed Tantray, Kouser Parveen, Samiullah Khan

Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, Page 1-13
DOI: 10.9734/ARJA/2016/29334

With the inevitable risk posed by global climate change to crop yield and ever increasing demands of agricultural production, crop improvement techniques have to be more precise in developing smart crop varieties. This review reviews the past, current progress and assesses the future directions in mutation breeding for crop improvement. It provides a background to plant mutation breeding strategies, basic and advanced techniques, and provides a critical review of this approach in comparison to other methods for the genetic improvement of crops. Mutation breeding is a fundamental and highly successful tool in the global efforts of agriculture to feed an ever increasing and nutritionally demanding human population. The physical and chemical mutagens, their effects and their utility are discussed. The induction of mutations has been used to enhance the yield, better nutritional quality and wider adaptability of world’s most important crops such as wheat, rice, pulses, millets and oilseeds. The total area covered by commercially released mutant cultivars clearly indicates that they have played a significant role in solving food and nutritional security problems in many countries. Of all the mutant varieties developed, majority of mutants were produced through direct mutagenesis of the plant propagules, and also there are several reports of mutants derived by irradiating rooted stem cuttings, which paves the way for in vitro mutagenesis. The production of mutants by irradiation of in vitro cultured tissues provides a means to treat large populations which would not have been possible before. The accessibility of genomics information in the public domain combined with the recent advances in molecular biology techniques have paved the way for transforming old mutation techniques into the state of art technology for crop improvement and basic genomic research. The molecular tagging and molecular marker based identification shall bring new dimensions in gene technology. These would finally lead to rapid enhancement of crops with improved yield, increased biotic and abiotic stress and reduced agronomic inputs. Thus mutation assisted plant breeding will play a crucial role in the generation of designer crop varieties to address the threats of global climate change and challenges of world food insecurity.