Plant and Soil

, Volume 191, Issue 2, pp 213–223

Trophic interactions between bacterial-feeding nematodes in plant rhizospheres and the nematophagous fungus Hirsutella rhossiliensis to suppress Heterodera schachtii


  • R.C. Venette
    • Department of NematologyUniversity of California
  • F.A.M. Mostafa
    • Faculty of Agriculture, Agricultural Zoology DepartmentMansoura University
  • H. Ferris
    • Department of NematologyUniversity of California

DOI: 10.1023/A:1004214032368

Cite this article as:
Venette, R., Mostafa, F. & Ferris, H. Plant and Soil (1997) 191: 213. doi:10.1023/A:1004214032368


Trophic exchanges in soil food webs may suppress populations of pest organisms. We hypothesize that the suppressive condition of soils might be enhanced by manipulating components of the food web. Specifically, by enhancing populations of bacterial-feeding nematodes, propagule density of the nematophagous fungus Hirsutella rhossiliensis should increase and constrain populations of Heterodera schachtii, a plant-parasitic nematode. The rhizospheres of Crotalaria juncea and Vicia villosa stimulated population growth of the bacterial-feeding nematode, Acrobeloides bodenheimeri, but not of the nematodes Caenorhabditis elegans or Rhabditis cucumeris. The rhizospheres of Tagetes patula, Eragrostis curvula, and Sesamum indicum had no effect on any of the bacterial-feeding nematodes investigated. Acrobeloides bodenheimeri was most susceptible to parasitism by the nematophagous fungus H. rhossiliensis with 35% of individuals being parasitized in a laboratory assay. In three separate trials, parasitism of H. schachtii by H. rhossiliensis was not enhanced when populations of A. bodenheimeri were amplified in a suitable rhizosphere.

bacterial-feeding nematodescover cropsfood websnematophagous fungussuppressivenesssusceptibility

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997