Biocontrol: Fungal Parasites of Female Cyst Nematodes

Brian Kerry


Three species of fungi, Catenaria auxiliarls (K¹hn) Tribe, Nematophthora gynophila Kerry and Crump, and a Lagenidiaceous fungus have been found attacking female cyst nematodes. All are zoosporic fungi which parasitize females on the root surface, cause the breakdown of the nematode cuticle, and prevent cyst formation. Their identification and some aspects of their biology are reviewed. N. gynophila is widespread in Britain and reduces populations of the cereal cyst nematode, Heterodera avenae Woll., to nondamaging levels. The potential of these nematophagous fungi as biocontrol agents is discussed. Key Words: Catenaria auxiliaris, Nematophthora gynophila, Lagenidiaceous fungus, Heterodera spp., "decline phenomenon," biocontrol.

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