Antagonists of Plant-parasitic Nematodes in Florida Citrus

  • David Evans Walter
  • David T. Kaplan


In a survey of antagonists of nematodes in 27 citrus groves, each with a history of Tylenchulus semipenetrans infestation, and 17 noncitrus habitats in Florida, approximately 24 species of microbial antagonists capable of attacking vermiform stages of Radopholus citrophilus were recovered. Eleven of these microbes and a species of Pasteuria also were observed attacking vermiform stages of T. semipenetrans. Verticillium chlamydosporium, Paecilomyces lilacinus, P. marquandii, Streptomyces sp., Arthrobotrys oligospora, and Dactylella ellipsospora were found infecting T. semipenetrans egg masses. Two species of nematophagous amoebae, five species of predatory nematodes, and 29 species of nematophagous arthropods also were detected. Nematode-trapping fungi and nematophagous arthropods were common inhabitants of citrus groves with a history of citrus nematode infestation; however, obligate parasites of nematodes were rare. Key words: biological control, burrowing nematode, citrus nematode, nematophagous arthropod, nematophagous fungus, Pasteuria, Streptomyces.