The Plant Pathology Journal (2020-10-01)

Development of a Daily Epidemiological Model of Rice Blast Tailored for Seasonal Disease Early Warning in South Korea

  • Kwang-Hyung Kim,
  • Imgook Jung

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 36, no. 5
pp. 406 – 417


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Early warning services for crop diseases are valuable when they provide timely forecasts that farmers can utilize to inform their disease management decisions. In South Korea, collaborative disease controls that utilize unmanned aerial vehicles are commonly performed for most rice paddies. However, such controls could benefit from seasonal disease early warnings with a lead time of a few months. As a first step to establish a seasonal disease early warning service using seasonal climate forecasts, we developed the EPIRICE Daily Risk Model for rice blast by extracting and modifying the core infection algorithms of the EPIRICE model. The daily risk scores generated by the EPIRICE Daily Risk Model were successfully converted into a realistic and measurable disease value through statistical analyses with 13 rice blast incidence datasets, and subsequently validated using the data from another rice blast experiment conducted in Icheon, South Korea, from 1974 to 2000. The sensitivity of the model to air temperature, relative humidity, and precipitation input variables was examined, and the relative humidity resulted in the most sensitive response from the model. Overall, our results indicate that the EPIRICE Daily Risk Model can be used to produce potential disease risk predictions for the seasonal disease early warning service.