Cowpea is a food and animal feed crop grown in the semi-arid tropics covering Africa, Asia, Europe, United States and Central and South America. It originated and was domesticated in Southern Africa and was later moved to East and West Africa and Asia.
The grains contain 25% protein, and several vitamins and minerals. The plant tolerates drought, performs well in a wide variety of soils, and being a legume replenishes low fertility soils when the roots are left to decay. It is grown mainly by small-scale farmers in developing regions where it is often cultivated with other crops as it tolerates shade. It also grows and covers the ground quickly, preventing erosion.
The name "cowpea" probably derives from when it was an important livestock feed for cows in the United States
Vigna unguiculata or cowpea is a self pollinating species belonging to the Fabaceae family. Its genome is diploid (2n=2x=22) with a genome size of 1C=620 Mbp. SNP markers, EST sequences and BAC physical map are now available for cowpea.
- SNP Markers for Cowpea
- SNP Marker Conversion to KASPAR System for Cowpea
- SSR Markers for Cowpea
- DArTs Markers for Cowpea
- Genetic Maps for Cowpea
- QTLs for Cowpea
- Physical Maps for Cowpea
- Comparative Maps for Cowpea
- Transcriptomics for Cowpea
- Genome Sequencing for Cowpea
- Link to crop ontology, with downloadable trait dictionary
To obtain the Central Database for Cowpea (which provides historical phenotyping data, germplasm information, trait information, and some genotyping data), download the Breeding Management System. Data curator: Sam Ofodile (IITA).
- FAO Agricultural Vocabulary Thesaurus - AGROVOC
- Non-Chemical Pest Management - Cowpea
- Non-Chemical Pest Management - Soybean
- GCP Research Products Catalogue for Cowpea
- IITA Research Programme on Cowpea
- CGIAR Research Programme on Grain Legumes
- GCP Tropical Legumes Research Initiative
- Legume Information System
- SeedQuest® - Focus on Marker-Assisted Breeding
- IBP Cowpea Community of Practice
CGIAR Crop Lead Centre: