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Sangeeta Kumari, S. K. Singh, Amit Kumar and Sarfaraz Ali*


Antheraea mylitta D. produced tasar silk is a high value natural animal fibre of great international market potential. The insect is cultured outdoor in natural surroundings gets affected by extreme weather, pests, diseases etc. which decrease its commercial production as well as productivity. To overcome these obstacles artificial culturing of insects in optimized temperature, nutrition, habitat etc. is being devised. In this study the quantitative and qualitative impact of dietary changes on insect has been studied by changing the primary food crop (Terminalia arjuna) to secondary food crop (Terminalia belarica) and vice-versa in seed crop and commercial crop season. The investigation found that this interchange of food plants is effective and alternative methods for larval culture of tasar worms for desired productivity (E.R.R.%) and quality of tasar cocoons (cocoons weight, shell weight and shell ratio) as well as the quality of tasar yarn (filament length and size of tasar yarn) of Antheraea mylitta D. The results were more favoured when food crop change was made from secondary to primary food plant. Results were of importance when experimental values were compared to its control in both interchange of food crop from primary to secondary and vise-versa in both seed crop and commercial crop season. These findings are encouraging for the production of tasar silk by rearing cocoons by artificial culture in Indian conditions.

Keywords: Antheraea mylitta, tasar silk, Cocoons, dietary variations, Sericulture, Emergence, Seed crop, Commercial crop, Agronomics, primary food crop, secondary food crop.

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