Submitted to: Russian Journal of Nematology
Publication Type: Abstract only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/7/2005
Publication Date: 7/1/2005
Citation: Handoo, Z.A., Khan, A. 2005. A key and diagnostic compendium to the species of the genus merlinius siddiqi, 1970 (nematoda: telotylenchidae), with description of one new species of merlinius. Russian Journal of Nematology. 13(2):148. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: An identification key to 31 valid species of Merlinius is given. A compendium of the most important diagnostic characters for use in identification of species is included as a practical alternative and supplement to the key. The diagnosis of Merlinius is emended, and a list of all the valid species of the genus, their synonymies, and species inquirendae is given. The characters most useful for separating species include body and stylet lengths, shape of head, stylet knobs, tail and tail terminus, number of head and tail annules, nature of lateral field, position of vulva (V%), and T/ABW ratio in females. Also useful are length and shape of spicules and gubernacula in males. Photomicrographs of diagnostically important morphological features are given that compliment the key and compendium. A new Merlinius sp. was found around the soil and roots of date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) from Khuzdar, Baluchistan Province, Pakistan. This new species resembles M. bilqeesae Khan & Khan, 1995 and M. montanus Maqbool & Shahina, 1987 but differs from these species by the following: body and stylet length, shape of head, median bulb, tail and tail terminus, number of head and tail annules, position of phasmid and by their vastly different habitat. Because this species is limited in distribution, its economic importance in date palm and other cultivated crops within the region is not known.