Comparative Analysis of Developmental Stages in Six Different Bivoltine Races of Bombyx Mori

Research Article
*Anita, Tripathi,N.K., Bhatti, A.A and Poonam
Bombyx mori, sericulture, silkworm, bivoltine, cocoon, races, larvae

Silkworm gives us silk which is acclaimed as the “queen of textiles”. Sericulture is the production of silk through rearing of silkworm, an important sector in national economy, provides livelihood opportunities for millions of people who produce and process silk. The silkworm Bombyx mori is a completely domesticated insect and has a no. of races viz. univoltine, bivoltine and polyvoltine. The state of Jammu and Kashmir is known for producing bivoltine silk of international quality. Being one of the traditional agro-based industries of the state producing high quality bivoltine silk comparable to international quality helps in improving the economic conditions of landless farmers and weaker sections of the society and providing employment opportunities during pre- and post cocoon activities. Presently about 25500 rural families generating income worth Rs. 1100 lakhs annually and 1 lakh man days in private reeling sector are associated with this profession. Realizing the importance of sericulture, the genetic diversity of the silkworm should be maintained and analyzed for various traits so that it may help in evolving new locally acclimatized, high yielding superior quality silk producing breeds. In the present study, six bivoltine races of B.mori were reared in sub-tropical conditions of Jammu, assuring the same micro-climate conditions, being fed with same variety of mulberry leaves. The egg, larval, and cocoon characters were analyzed for the differences and similarities that may help in selective breeding.