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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Development of Entomopathogenic Nematodes As a Management Tactic for Citrus Root Weevils in Florida

Authors
item Mccoy, Clayton - UNIV. OF FLORIDA
item Duncan, Larry - UNIV. OF FLORIDA
item Stuart, Robin - UNIV. OF FLORIDA
item Shapiro Ilan, David

Submitted to: Invertebrate Pathology International Colloquium Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: August 1, 2002
Publication Date: August 1, 2002
Citation: Mccoy, C.W., Duncan, L.W., Stuart, R.J., Shapiro Ilan, D.I. 2002. Development of entomopathogenic nematodes as a management tactic for citrus root weevils in florida. Invertebrate Pathology International Colloquium Proceedings.

Interpretive Summary: Insect-killing nematodes are small round worms that kill insect pests but do not harm people or the environment. Citrus weevils are key pests of Florida citrus, and are one of the insect pests that are susceptible to these nematodes. Several kinds (species) of insect-killing nematodes occur naturally in Florida soils and provide some suppression. Four different nematode species have been sold commercially to suppress the citrus weevils. To achieve high levels of control, large numbers of nematodes must be applied (at least 100,000 per square foot). Soil type can affect the ability of nematodes to control insects. The nematodes appear to do best in soils with high levels of coarse sand. More research is needed to find the best way to use nematodes for killing citrus weevils and other pests.

Technical Abstract: Several weevils, particularly Diaprepes abbreviatus and Pachnaeus spp. are major pests of citrus in Florida. Entomopathogenic nematodes have been shown to suppress these weevils under field conditions. Several nematode species are endemic in Florida soils and provide natural control. Four nematode species have been sold commercially to suppress the citrus wevils. Research indicates at least 100 infective juveniles per square cm are required to achieve high levels of control. Nematode species, and soil parameters can affect the ability of nematodes to control insects; the nematodes appear to do best in soils with high levels of course sand. More research is needed to optimize weevil suppression using entomopathogenic nematodes.

Last Modified: 9/2/2014
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