Oryctonema pentodonis sp. n. (Rhabditidae) from the genital system of Pentodon punctatus Vill. (Scarabaeidae: Coleoptera) in Italy
AbstractThe genus Oryctonema was erected for the rather unusual species genitalis Poinar (1970) which lives in the bursa copulatrix and aedaegus of tropical dynostid beetles. A closely related nematode was discovered in the genital system of the beetle, Pentodon punctatus in Italy. Both species of nematodes resemble each other in general morphology and habitat, however there are several basic morphological characters that separate them. The nematode from P. punctatus is described in the present study as a new species in the genus Oryctonema. In so doing, the original description of the genus has been revised. The larvae of the host, P. punctatus often cause damage while feeding on the roots of young grape plants. It has not been determined whether the nematode has a detrimental effect on its host.