Culturable Bacteria associated with the Whitefly, Bemisia Argentifolii (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae)

Elizabeth W. Davidson, Rosemarie C. Rosell, Donald L. Hendrix


Several different types of bacteria were cultured from surface-sterilized Bemisia argentifolii Bellows, Perring, Gill and Hedrick 1994 (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) adults and nymphs, including Bacillus spp., Gram-variable pleomorphic rods and Gram-positive cocci. Two of the isolates were capable of being ingested by adults and passed into the honeydew. One of these, Enterobacter cloacae, was found within the gut cells of adult whiteflies and was mildly pathogenic. This isolate represents the first bacterium with potential as a pathogen of whiteflies. Bacteria which were not capable of being ingested, may have been located in structures which were protected from surface sterilization, such as the lingula or the female reproductive tract.

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