Savanna Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences 1(1):9 - 13
Fungi Associated with the Spoilage of Water Melon Fruits (Citrullus lanatus Thumb.) in Jega Local Government Area, Kebbi State, Nigeria
Abubakar, M., Singh, D., Hamisu, A. and Bashar, G.B.

Fungal pathogens lead to deterioration and reduction in yield of many fruits produced in Nigeria. This study was carried out to determine the fungal pathogens associated with spoilt watermelon fruits in Jega Local Government Area, Kebbi State. A total of fifty (50) watermelon fruits were collected from five locations viz; Jega, Dangamaji, Kimba, Gindi and Basaura markets. The fungi were isolated using agar plate method and pure isolates were identified in accordance with a standard chart. A total of nine (9) fungal isolates were associated with the spoilage of the fruits namely; Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus wentii, Scopulariopsis brevicaulis, Scopulriopsis fusca, Debaryomyces hanseni, Kluyvermyces marxianus, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Zygosaccharomyces bailii. From the results obtained, Aspergillus flavus had the highest percentage of occurrence (23.53%) followed by Aspergillus niger (15.29%) while Scopulariopsis brevicaulis had the lowest (3.53%). Based on locations, Kimba had the highest percentage of the fungal loads (28.6%) followed by Jega Central Markets (22.4%) with Gindi having the lowest (10.2%). The fungi isolated in this study may use compromised surfaces such as wounds to cause rots on these fruits. There is therefore need for proper and careful check-up for deep and even light scratches on these fruits before storage as these pathogens can lead to considerable damage and fruit loss if not properly managed