VEGETOS: An International Journal of Plant ResearchOnline ISSN: 2229-4473
Print ISSN: 0970-4078

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Molecular Identification of Entomopathogenic Nematode Isolate and its Virulence to White Grub, Leucopholis burmeisteri (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

Molecular Identification of Entomopathogenic Nematode Isolate and its Virulence to White Grub, Leucopholis burmeisteri (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

Entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) carrying symbiotic bacteria represent one of the best non chemical strategies for pest management. Isolation and identification of native isolates in the field are necessary for successful control of insect pests due to their better adoption in local environment. An native isolate of EPN was identified as Steinernema carpocapsae recovered from soil rhizosphere of coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) plantations based upon molecular resolution of 16s rRNA and COXII genes. The virulence of the identified nematode isolate was evaluated on white grub (Leucopholis burmeisteri) neonate larvae and found highly virulent at nematode density of 700 Infective Juveniles (IJs) / larvae caused 100% mortality within 4-5 days of post inoculation and 73.3% mortality of early 2nd instar grubs within 6-8 days of post inoculation at density of 6000 IJs/larva (P=0.05). In laboratory assays the identified isolate demonstrated virulence to white grub indicates its potential as a biological control agent and could be potentially incorporated in integrated pest management programmes...

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