Survey of Plant-parasitic Nematodes in Missouri Cotton Fields


  • J. A. Wrather
  • T. L. Niblack
  • M. R. Milam


During September 1990, 30 cotton fields in each of three Missouri counties were surveyed for plant-parasitic nematodes. Soil samples for nematode analysis consisted of a composite of 20 cores collected in a zig-zag pattern within a 1-ha block in each field. Cores were taken from within weed-free cotton rows. Nine genera of plant-parasitic nematodes were found (Rotylenchulus, Helicotylenchus, Hoplolaimus, Meloidogyne, Paratylenchus, Pratylenchus, Tylenchorhynchus, Heterodera, and Trichodorus), and five species were identified: Meloidogyne incognita, Rotylenchulus reniformis, Hoplolaimus galeatus, Pratylenchus vulnus, and P. scribneri. This is the first report of R. reniformis, H. galeatus, P. vulnus, and P. scribneri in Missouri cotton fields and the first report of R. reniformis and P. vulnus in Missouri. The known cotton pathogens M. incognita, R. reniformis, and H. galeatus were found in 30%, 3%, and 2% of the fields sampled, respectively. The correlation between sand content of the soil sample and the number of vermiform M. incognita in the sample was not significant, with r² = 0.13. Select fields where H. galeatus and R. reniformis were found in 1990 were sampled more intensely in 1991. The 1-ha block sampled in 1990 was sampled in 1991, along with three other 1-ha blocks uniformly distributed within the field. In addition, a 1-ha block was sampled in each of eight nearby fields, within 2 km of the first field. The nine plant-parasitic nematode genera identified in the 1990 survey were observed again in 1991. Within-field distribution of M. incognita, R. reniformis, and H. galeatus was not uniform. When M. incognita, R. reniformis, or H. galeatus were present in a field, the same species was found in 38%, 25%, or 50% of nearby fields, respectively. Key words: cotton, Gossypium hirsutum, Meloidogyne incognita, Missouri, nematode, Rotylenchulus reniformis, Hoplolaimus galeatus, survey.