Development Rates in Entomopathogenic Nematodes: Infected Hosts vs. Aqueous Suspension


  • Edwin E. Lewis
  • David Shapiro-Ilan
  • Clayton McCoy


entomopathogenic nematodes, heterorhabditis bacteriophora, host, rearing conditions, steinernema carpocapsae


Rearing conditions have been shown to affect several aspects of entomopathogenic nematode biology, including dispersal behavior and infectivity. The present study explores the differences in development rate of Heterorhabditis bacteriophora and Steinernema carpocapsae when infective juveniles (IJ) were collected in water using the standard White trap method vs. natural emergence from cadavers into sand. We exposed Galleria mellonella to IJ entompopathogenic nematodes treated in one of three ways: collected in a White trap, allowed to emerge directly into sand, or collected in a White trap and treated with a cadaver homogenate. When S. carpocapsae IJ were allowed to emerge from cadavers directly into sand and then allowed to infect new hosts, they developed into adults at a faster rate than IJ that were collected with White traps. The difference in development was not due to differential infection rates. No difference in development stages was detected amount the same H. bacteriophora treatments.