Mosquitoes and nematodes

Steve Schutz Steve at uckac.edu
Thu Aug 31 19:11:53 EST 1995


In article <422b0c$57h at vixen.cso.uiuc.edu>, kevinfay at osiris.cso.uiuc.edu 
says...
>
>Now here are my questions:

>        1. We have many areas (sediment ponds, etc) where we conduct
>mosquito larvaciding. Is introducing mermithids a viable form of
>biological mosquito control?


I haven't worked with nematodes myself but I have given a few talks on 
biocontrol and might be able to partially answer part of your questions

Apparently they have shown promise, particularly in small well-defined 
habitats like woodland pools etc. but are sensitive to water quality and often 
do not acheive high enough control rates in the field.

>
>        2. Are they being produced commercially or are there companies
>that produce other nematodes that may be interested in producing these? I
>have an article that mentions a product called Skeeter Doom which was
>supposed to be a commercially prepared mosquito mermithid.

The problem is apparently that they are very difficult/expensive/tricky to 
mass produce and the commercial outfits have basically given up. 

>
>        3. Are Anopheles and Culex the only mosquitoes these mermithids 
parasitize?
>I haven't read much research on mermithids and Aedes. Is this true or am I
>missing something?


Natural parasitism of some snow pool Aedes species by mermithids is incredibly 
high

>
>        4. I have an article from Agricultural Research that explains how
>to rear the mermithid R. nielseni, however I understand that this
>mermithid is only native to Louisiana. Is this true? Would I have to rear
>my own larvae and see what type mermithid emerged and then introduce them
>into areas where no mermithids are present?

Don't know.

See the article "The future of microbial insecticides as vector control 
agents" (B.A. Federici 1995;  J. Amer. mosq. contr. Assoc 11:260-268) for an 
overview of the current status of various biocontrol agents including 
nematodes.

Hope this is helpful

--Steve Schutz






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