Association of the Red Ring Nematode and Other Nematode Species with the Palm Weevil, Rhynchophorus palmarum


  • Karin Gerber
  • Robin M. Giblin-Davis


The palm weevil, Rhynchophorus palmarum (L.), was collected in cocoons from red ring-diseased coconut palms (Cocos nucifera L.) in Trinidad and Tobago. Juveniles of five species of nematodes were extracted from the genitalia and macerated bodies of newly emerged adults of the palm weevil: Rhadinaphelenchus cocophilus (Cobb) Goodey (the red ring nematode), Teratorhabditis sp., Diplogasteritus sp., Mononchoides sp., and Bursaphelenchus sp. Over 90% of newly emerged weevil females and males were infested internally with red ring nematode juveniles, and over 47% of the weevils contained more than 1,000 red ring nematodes each. There was no significant correlation between weevil body length and the number of red ring nematodes carried internally by each weevil. Teratorhabditis sp. and Diplogasteritus sp. were extracted from over 50% of the palm weevils, and Monochoides sp. and Bursaphelenchus sp. were found in a small proportion of the weevils. Field-collected adult weevils were also internally and externally infested with a Rhabditis sp., which was not observed in or on weevils allowed to emerge from field-collected cocoons. Key words: Bursaphelenchus sp., Cocos nucifera, Diplogasteritus sp., entomophilic nematode, Mononchoides sp., palm weevil, red ring nematode, Rhabditis sp., Rhadinaphelenchus cocophilus, Rhynchophorus palmarum, Teratorhabditis sp., Trinidad.