Suppression of Rotylenchulus reniformis on Cotton by the Nematophagous Fungus ARF
AbstractThe reniform nematode, Rotylenchulus reniformis Linford & Oliveira, has become a serious threat to cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) production in the United States during the past decade. The objective of this study is to isolate fungi from eggs of R. reniformis and select potential biological control agents for R. reniformis on cotton. Soil samples were collected from cotton fields located in Jefferson County, Arkansas. Eight genera of fungi were included in the 128 fungal isolates obtained, and among them were five strains of the nematophagous fungus ARF. The mtDNA RFLP pattern, colony growth characteristics, and pathogenicity indicate the five ARF isolates represent one described strain and one new strain. Light and electron microscopic observations suggest ARF is an active parasite of R. reniformis, with parasitism ranging from 48% to 79% in in vitro tests. Three greenhouse experiments demonstrated ARF successfully suppressed the number of reniform nematodes during the first and second generation of the nematode. Reductions in numbers of R. reniformis on the roots for the seven application rates of 0.01%, 0.05%, 0.1%, 0.2%, 0.3%, 0.4%, and 0.5% ARF were 87%, 92%, 94%, 96%, 97%, 98%, and and 98%, respectively.
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