Steinernema sp., a putative new entomopathogenic nematode species, was isolated from epizootics in larvae of Japanese beetle and oriental beetle larvae in New Jersey. Under laboratory conditions, Steinernema sp. infected a limited range of insect species and was best adapted to scarab larvae as hosts. It uses a widely ranging foraging strategy with a low attachment rate to mobile hosts on the soil surface but excellent infection of sedentary hosts below the soil surface. It has a wide thermal activity range with optimum infectivity at 17.5 to 25°C. In laboratory, greenhouse experiments, and limited field experiments Steinernema sp. showed excellent efficacy against a range of white grub species and dramatically outperformed any other nematode species including Heterorhabditis bacteriophora and Steinernema glaseri.
Species 1: Rhabditida Steinernematidae Steinernema
Species 2: Coleoptera Scarabaeidae Exomala (=Anomala) orientalis (oriental beetle)
Species 3: Coleoptera Scarabaeidae Popillia japonica (Japanese beetle)
Keywords: biological control, turfgrass
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