Sampling Error in Relation to Cyst Nematode Population Density Estimation in Small Field Plots.

Vesna Zupunski, Radivoje Jevtic, Vesna Spasic Jokic, Ljubica Zupunski, Mirjana Lalosevic, Mihajlo Ciric, Zivko Curcic


Cyst nematodes are serious plant-parasitic pests which could cause severe yield losses and extensive damage. Since there is still very little information about error of population density estimation in small field plots, this study contributes to the broad issue of population density assessment. It was shown that there was no significant difference between cyst counts of five or seven bulk samples taken per each 1-m2 plot, if average cyst count per examined plot exceeds 75 cysts per 100 g of soil. Goodness of fit of data to probability distribution tested with x2 test confirmed a negative binomial distribution of cyst counts for 21 out of 23 plots. The recommended measure of sampling precision of 17% expressed through coefficient of variation (cv) was achieved if the plots of 1m2 contaminated with more than 90 cysts per 100 g of soil were sampled with 10-core bulk samples taken in five repetitions. If plots were contaminated with less than 75 cysts per 100 g of soil, 10-core bulk samples taken in seven repetitions gave cv higher than 23%. This study indicates that more attention should be paid on estimation of sampling error in experimental field plots to ensure more reliable estimation of population density of cyst nematodes.

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