Developmental and Cocoon Parameters of the Silkworm, Bombyx mori L. (Lepidopter: Bombicidae), Fed on Mulberry Leaves Preserved for Different Durations under Tropical Conditions


ABSTRACT: The effects on the general performance and cocoon yield of two silkworm hybrids fed with mulberry leaves preserved for 0, 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours were investigated. Leaf samples of each of the treatments were analyzed for nutrient contents. The experiment was a 2 x 5 factorial arrangement fitted into a completely randomized design in 4 replications. One hundred silkworm larvae of each hybrid were allocated to each replicate treatment and fed on the preserved leaves throughout the larval stages. Results showed that duration of preservation and silkworm hybrids significantly influenced the shell ratio, both singly and jointly. Interaction between the two factors was significant for the number of cocoons and cocoon weight. Single cocoon weight and shell weight were
significantly higher in larvae fed with leaves preserved at 0 and 24 hours. Fecundity, larval and pupal emergence were not influenced by the two factors. However, higher larval and pupal weights were observed in silkworms fed on leaves preserved for 0 and 24 hours.
Keywords: Development, Cocoon parameters, Silkworm, Mulberry leaves

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