Termite Pathogens: Effects of Ingested Metarhizium, beauveria, and Gliocladium conidia on worker termites (Reticulitermes sp.)

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Department of Biological Sciences; College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science


Separate groups of subterranean termites (Reticulitermes sp.) were exposed to whole cultures of Beauveria bassiana, Gliocladium virens, or Metarhizium anisopliae. Individuals were removed after varying time intervals and hindgut contents were plated onto potato dextrose agar. Viable spores first appeared in the hindguts within 8 hr of exposure. Fungi reisolated from the hindguts of diseased termites were pathogenic of healthy termites. Histological examination showed that invasion of the hemocoel by M. anisopliae occurred exclusively through direct invasion of the integument ca. 24 hr after death. B. bassiana invaded, primarily through the alimentary tract, ca. 12 hr prior to termite death.

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© 1982

Publication Title

Journal of Invertebrate Pathology