Further spread of ergot disease of sorghum
The introduction into Brazil of Claviceps africana, causing the sugary disease or ergot of sorghum, was reported in mid-1995 (see EPPO RS 97/031). Ergot is a serious disease which was initially restricted to Asia and Africa. The Indian pathogen is C. sorghi, and the African pathogen is C. africana. The anamorph of both fungi is Sphacelia sorghi. The disease reduces seed yield and quality in hybrid seed production fields, particularly if seed set is delayed in male-sterile lines. In Brazil, estimated losses of 3 million USD for the seed industry were given in 1995. By 1996, the disease was also found in Argentina, Bolivia and Colombia. In April 1996, it was reported in Australia (southern Queensland) where it spread over 60,000 km2 in 3 weeks.
Sorghum ergot - Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Australia.
E-mail message of 1997-02 from PROMED