Submitted to: Journal of Entomological Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/31/1999
Publication Date: 7/1/2000
Citation: Interpretive Summary: Insect larvae of several species of moths are some of our most important agricultural pests. Parasitic nematodes have been identified that live on the body surface of moths and weaken them by sucking their blood. One of the insects that is parasitized by these nematodes is the fall armyworm. We collected infected and uninfected wild male moths and matched them by age based on the amount of scales that remained on their bodies. Pairs of infected and uninfected moths were incubated and the number of days that the moths lived was determined. We found that fall armyworm moths infected with nematodes lived for a shorter time than uninfected moths and we conclude that the nematode is harmful to the moth.
Technical Abstract: Noctuidonema guyanense Remillet and Silvain is an ectoparasitic nematode of certain species of adult Lepidoptera, particularly Noctuidae, in the Western Hemisphere. It is transferred to a new host when the insects mate. Survival of infested and uninfested feral adult males of Spodoptera frugiperda, the fall armyworm, was compared at three different temperature regimens (20C, 30C, and 30/20C at 14:10 D/N) at 80% RH. Age differences were controlled by pairing moths having the same amount of scale loss. Results showed that overall mean nematode infestations of 239.3 and 0 in infested and uninfested groups significantly (P<0.01) affected mean survival of 3.7 and 6.2 days, respectively. At 20C, survival of both groups increased to 6.2 and 13.3 days, but remained significantly different (P<0.01). The results demonstrate a deleterious effect of Noctuidonema infestation on longevity of feral adult male Spodoptera frugiperda.