Ephelis oryzae was identified on a single diseased panicle of pearl millet grown next to foxtail millet [Setaria italica (L.) Beauv.] India in 1975. Florets in the lower half of the affected panicle were greyish and glued and pressed toward the rachis. Spores were acicular hyaline and measured 15-24 × 1.4-1.8 µm with an average length of 19.26 µm, which is very close to the spore size of E. oryzae on S. italica. This disease was an atypical occurrence, which does not appear to have been observed again. E. oryzae has also been reported on Pennisetum hohenackeri and P. alopecuroides (Reddy and Lucy Channamma 1976). Balansia is the teleomorph of Ephelis. Balansia claviceps Speg. has been cited as a pathogen of pearl millet in Senegal by Ramakrishnan (1971); however, the source citation referred to in that publication is incorrect and thus is unavailable for examination. Other reported hosts include Echinochloa crus-galli, Setaria italica, Isachne elegans, and Eragrostis tenuifolia (Venkatakrishniah 1952).
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Original posting: June 5, 1999.