Accelerated Movement of Nematodes from Soil in Baermann Funnels with Temperature Gradients


  • A. F. Robinson
  • C. M. Heald


Baermann funnels were modified to eliminate or reverse the small temperature gradient (1-2 C/cm) across the soil layer that normally results from water evaporation. Effects of modifications on extraction efficiency were examined at various ambient temperatures and after overnight adaptation of three nematode species at 20 and 30 C. Extraction of Meloidogyne incognita from sandy loam, Tylenchulus semipenetrans from sandy clay loam, and Rotylenchulus reniformis from silt was greatly accelerated simply by covering funnels to prevent evaporation. In most cases, covering increased the nematodes extracted by 10-100 times after 5.5-48 hours. Faster and more efficient extraction of R. reniformis occurred over a wide range of ambient temperature (18-29 C). Effects of ambient temperature and temperature gradient direction on Baermann funnel extraction of R. reniformis were partly inconsistent with the behavior of R. reniformis in agar. Nematodes in agar moved toward cold at some ambient temperatures and toward heat at other temperatures. They always appeared to move toward cold on Baermann funnels. Differences were not attributable to blockage of gas exchange by covers. In agar and in funnels, the patterns of response to ambient temperature were shifted in the direction of the storage temperature. Key words: Baermann funnel, behavior, Meloidogyne incognita, nematode extraction, Rotylenchulus reniformis, thermal adaptation, thermotaxis, Tylenchulus semipenetrans.