SELECTION OF SUPERIOR RICE LANDRACES BASED ON AGRO- MORPHOLOGICAL TRAITSAnand Kumar, Sanjay Kumar, Ravi Ranjan Kumar, Anil Kumar, Tushar Ranjan and Parmanand Parmhansh
Bihar is a typical eastern state, with a large proportion of land (3.2 mha) under rice, which has an average productivity of only 2.0 t ha-1. More than half of the rice area is rainfed lowland, including flood-prone ecosystems, which are characterized by low productivity obtained under traditional systems of cultivation. Despite scientists claims to have developed appropriate high-yielding varieties (HYVs), both at a national and a state level, their adoption is negligible. Farmers prefer their own cultivars which are highly adapted to the varying adverse conditions prevalent in the region. These local cultivars have passed through innumerable generations of selection and have evolved mechanisms to adjust to the harsh environment. There is no doubt that HYVs perform better when conditions are at their optimum, but they virtually fail when conditions are adverse. In this situation, the higher stability of traditional cultivars is preferred by farmers. In the present investigation, ninety five local landraces and twenty five genotypes of rice germplasm of north Bihar were evaluated for yield and yield attributing traits. It was observed that selection of rice germplasm based on visual observation for different polygenic traits is less rewarding. In this context, selection of superior rice genotypes by assigning ranks to each genotype for various quantitative traits followed by rank correlation was estimated and it was observed that two multiple regression equation involving eight and four quantitative traits exhibited similar efficiency, indicated that four characters viz. panicle length, number of primary branches, L/B ratio and 1000 grain weight were the best characters for formulating selection criteria. Top ten genotypes identified on the basis of selection score were TCA-88-1, Kasaunjh, TCA88-3, TCA88-2, TCA88-81-1, TCA88-57-3, TCA88-10-1, TCA88-13-2, TCA88-79-2 and Dhusari. These enotypes found to be suitable for grain yield and components traits may be selected for further evaluation and utilization in rice improvement programme of north Bihar condition.
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