1. From SEM studies, transmission routes of Thripinema nicklewoodi were photographed. Thripinema nicklewoodi penetrated larvae thrips through intersegmental membranes of a coxal cavity and the abdomen, and exited the adult thrips via the anus. The coxal cavity for portal and anus for exit were already reported, but the penetration of the abdomen by T. nicklewoodi is a new observation.
2. Thripinema nicklewoodi have been recorded in three thrips species in the family of Thripidae, Frankliniella occidentalis, F. vaccinii, Taeniothrips vaccinophilus. However, there has been no study on the potential host range of the nematode. From laboratory host range tests for two other thrips in the family of Thripidae, we found Thrips tabaci, in the subfamily of Thripinae, was parasitized and used for reproduction by the nematode as readily as F. occidentalis. However, the other thrips Heliothrips haemorrhoidalis in the subfamily of Panchaetothripinae was unsuitable as a host for the nematode because the nematode did not produce any eggs when checked at 10 days after nematode penetration. Interestingly, no significant differences were found in both host preference tests between F. occidentalis and T. tabaci and between F. occidentalis and H. haemorrhoidalis. The reproduction of T. nicklewoodi in T. tabaci may provide additional thrips control when used against F. occidentalis in a crop system where T. tabaci is also present.
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