Parasitism of Nematodes by the Fungus Hirsutella rhossiliensis as Affected by Certain Organic Amendments

B. A. Jaffee, H. Ferris, J. J. Stapleton, M. V. K. Norton, A. E. Muldoon


Experiments were conducted to determine whether the addition of organic matter to soil increased numbers of bacterivorous nematodes and parasitic activity of the nematophagous fungus Hirsutella rhossiliensis. In a peach orchard on loamy sand, parasitism of the plant-parasitic nematode Criconemella xenoplax by H. rhossiliensis was slightly suppressed and numbers of C. xenoplax were not affected by addition of 73 metric tons of composted chicken manure/ha. In the laboratory, numbers of bacterivorous nematodes (especially Acrobeloides spp.) and fungivorous nematodes increased but parasitism of nematodes by H. rhossiliensis usually decreased with addition of wheat straw or composted cow manure to a loamy sand naturally infested with H. rhossiliensis. These results do not support the hypothesis that organic amendments will enhance parasitism of nematodes by H. rhossiliensis. Key words: bacterivorous nematode, biocontrol, biological control, Criconemella xenoplax, density-dependent parasitism, fungivorous nematode, Hirsutella rhossiliensis, nematode, nematophagous fungus, organic amendment.

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