Summary of classical biological control introductions of entomopathogens and nematodes for insect control

Abstract

A catalogue of classical biological control introductions of entomopathogens (fungi, microsporidia, viruses, bacteria, and one oomycete) and nematodes attacking arthropod pests, updated from a 2005 first edition, was published in 2016. This paper summarizes and discusses the 2016 catalogue. Classical biological control with pathogens or nematodes has been used to target insect or mite pests in 55 countries. A total of 164 release programs using 49 species or isolates of entomopathogens and nematodes for control of more than 85 target pest species were included in the analysis. For the 119 programs where results after release were reported, 71% of agents became established, and of those that established 51% resulted in successful control of the target pest and an additional 36% provided partial control. The most frequent pathogen groups used have been fungi, viruses, and nematodes, and the most frequent target hosts have been Coleoptera and Hemiptera. Releases of viruses were most successful at establishing (97%). The great success of some programs using pathogens highly specific to pest species suggests that this strategy should be further explored.

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Acknowledgements

We thank Travis Glare for sharing the fungal releases by ‘Old Farmer’ in 1894–1895. We thank Jørgen Eilenberg and Eric Clifton for their assistance with this manuscript and reviewers and the editor for their helpful comments. We thank Dick Reardon and the USDA Forest Service for support of this project.

Funding

The 2016 catalogue that is reviewed in this paper was not created with specific funding. The catalogue was published by the USDA Forest Service. Dr. Richard Reardon agreed to publishing this catalogue and a lovely job was done. So, the USDA Forest Service and Dr. Reardon supported creating the catalogue and this paper would not have been possible without the catalogue. However, this review paper was written without specific funding that supported the analyses and writing of this paper.

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Correspondence to Ann E. Hajek.

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This paper is a review and not primary research so no animals/humans were participants and informed consent is not at issue.

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Handling Editor: Nicolai Meyling.

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Hajek, A.E., Gardescu, S. & Delalibera, I. Summary of classical biological control introductions of entomopathogens and nematodes for insect control. BioControl 66, 167–180 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10526-020-10046-7

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Keywords

  • Microbial control
  • Introduction biological control
  • Importation biological control
  • Invasive species
  • Pest management