Safety of Hyphomycete Fungi as Microbial Control Agents

  • Susanne Vestergaard
  • Andrew Cherry
  • Siegfried Keller
  • Mark Goettel
Part of the Progress in Biological Control book series (PIBC, volume 1)


Several microbial control products based on entomopathogenic Hyphomycetes are commercially available for management of invertebrate pests (Shah & Goettel 1999; Strasser et al. 2000; Copping 2001), while other fungi are under study or are being developed (Inglis et al. 2001). Some products are applied over very large areas while others are used only on a relatively small scale. As with other pathogens, there is concern that the use of entomopathogenic Hyphomycetes as microbial control agents (MCAs) could be hazardous to the applicator or the environment. Experience suggests that entomopathogenic Hyphomycetes pose minimal risk to humans, domestic animals and wildlife, and the environment, despite their facultative nature and relatively wide host ranges. In general, it is not possible to reduce a pest population without also affecting other components of the ecosystem, and the most likely environmental risk is to non-target invertebrates. The effects of entomopathogenic fungi on non-targets organisms (NTOs) have, however, only recently been investigated under field conditions (e.g. Peveling et al. 1994, 1999; Hajek & Goettel 2000; Vestergaard & Eilenberg 2000; Goettel et al. 2001). In this chapter, we review and discuss the safety and possible detrimental effects of the entomopathogenic Hyphomycetes to NTOs. Although it is known that many entomopathogenic Hyphomycetes possess teleomorphs within the genus Cordyceps (Samson et al. 1988), very little is known about the ecology of Hyphomycetes or Cordyceps as relates to the transition between the anamorph and teleomorph stages. Consequently, we feel that, at this time, any assessment of risk of the possible teleomorph based on application of the anamorph is not warranted and this aspect is therefore not covered any further in this chapter.


Entomopathogenic Fungus Ground Beetle Wide Host Range Beauveria Bassiana Microbial Control 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susanne Vestergaard
  • Andrew Cherry
  • Siegfried Keller
  • Mark Goettel

There are no affiliations available

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