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Pathogenicity of entomopathogenic fungi to Thaumetopoea pityocampa (Schiff.) (Lepidoptera: Thaumatopoeidae) larvae in laboratory conditions


Pathogenicity of 13 strains of entomopathogenic fungi belonging to genera Paecilomyces, Tolypocladium, Beauveria, Metarhizium, and Lecanicillium (=Verticillium) was evaluated on fourth instar larvae of Thaumetopoea pityocampa (Schiff.) (Lep.: Thaumatopoeidae). Larvae were treated individually by dipping into conidial suspension with the concentration of 1.0 × 105 conidia ml−1. All the tested isolates resulted in various levels of mortality (16–100%), and eleven of them were able to grow and sporulate on dead larvae. Mortality caused by three isolates of P. fumosoroseus, one isolate of Beauveria bassiana and one isolate of Metarhizium anisopliae were significantly higher than that of the other treatments. Three isolates of P. fumosoroseus, one isolate of P. farinosus, and one isolate of M. anisopliae showed mycelial growth and sporulation on significantly more cadavers compared to other treatments. Dose–mortality test was conducted with P. fumosoroseus (isolate no: 2679), which appeared to be the most promising isolate among the tested fungi, by spraying five concentrations of its conidia (1.0 × 106, 1.5 × 106, 7.5 × 106, 1.0 × 107 and 1.5 × 107 conidia ml−1). The estimation of the LC50 (95% confidence limits) was 3.4 × 106 (9.3 × 105 − 6.9 × 106) conidia ml−1. This study showed that P. fumosoroseus (isolate no: 2679) could be a good candidate as a microbial control agent against T. pityocampa in forest environment.

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We would like to thank to Dr. R. A. Humber and Dr. R. J. Milner for providing fungal cultures from ARSEF and CSIRO, respectively. Also thanks to C. Bengin and H. Şahin for their assistance during this study.

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Correspondence to M. K. Er.

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Er, M.K., Tunaz, H. & Gökçe, A. Pathogenicity of entomopathogenic fungi to Thaumetopoea pityocampa (Schiff.) (Lepidoptera: Thaumatopoeidae) larvae in laboratory conditions. J Pest Sci 80, 235–239 (2007).

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  • Thaumetopoea pityocampa
  • Entomopathogenic fungi
  • Mitosporic fungi
  • Virulence