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Steinernema scarabaei n. sp. (Rhabditida: Steinernematidae), a natural pathogen of scarab beetle larvae (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) from New Jersey, USA

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For more content, see Nematologica.

Steinernema scarabaei n. sp. (Rhabditida: Steinernematidae) is a new entomopathogenic nematode isolated from larvae of the scarab beetles Anomala(= Exomala)orientalis and Popillia japonica from turfgrass in New Jersey, USA. Morphology, hybridisation and molecular studies indicated the distinctness of S. scarabaei n. sp. from other Steinernema spp. Distinctive diagnostic characters include: the presence of a mucronated tail in both first generation adults; the presence of a ventrally bifurcated mucro in the first generation female tail; the size and shape of the spicules and gubernaculum and the arrangement of the genital papillae of the male; third-stage infective juvenile with total body length of 890-959 μm and lateral field with eight longitudinal ridges. RFLP analysis of the ITS region of rDNA showed S. scarabaei n. sp. to be distinct from 50 other Steinernema species and isolates. In addition, phylogenetic interpretation of sequence data from the LSU of rDNA provided further evidence for autapomorphies and separate species status for S. scarabaei n. sp.


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