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An image processing technique for the observation of the viability of Steinernema carpocapsae in spray application research

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image of Nematology
For more content, see Nematologica.

Damage caused to entomopathogenic nematodes by spray application is generally assessed by observing the viability of the infective juveniles under the microscope. To improve the quality and speed of this observation we developed an image processing technique and tested the efficacy of acetic acid and sodium chloride as chemical stimulants. Because of the lower standard error on the results obtained (0.7 vs 1.7), sodium chloride was eventually selected for all subsequent observations. The viability as observed with the image processing technique rose significantly with the time after the nematodes were suspended in water; however, viability as observed under the microscope was not influenced by the time. These differences can be attributed to the difference in type of stimulant (mechanical vs chemical) used. After nematodes had been in suspension for 3.5 h, the viability as measured using the image processing system was still significantly lower than the viability as measured under the microscope. This difference did not disappear after 24 h at 4, 15 or 24°C. Maintaining nematodes for 24 h at 35°C significantly decreased the viability to 5.9% (microscope) or 11.0% (image processing technique). The decrease in viability as observed with the image processing system corresponded better with the decrease in infectivity (i.e., 13.8%). Our results support further use of the image processing technique, not only to observe the viability of entomopathogenic nematodes but also to count the mobile or total number of nematodes of any species.

Affiliations: 1: Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Technology and Food Sciences Unit, Agricultural Engineering, Burg. Van Gansberghelaan 115, bus 1, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium;, Email: eva.brusselman@ilvo.vlaanderen.be; 2: Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Technology and Food Sciences Unit, Agricultural Engineering, Burg. Van Gansberghelaan 115, bus 1, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium; 3: Ghent University, Department of Crop Protection, Coupure links 653, 9000 Ghent, Belgium; 4: Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Technology and Food Sciences Unit, Brusselsesteenweg 370, 9090 Melle, Belgium; 5: Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Plant Sciences Unit, Burg. Van Gansberghelaan 96, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium; 6: Ghent University, Department of Crop Protection, Coupure links 653, 9000 Ghent, Belgium, Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Burg. Van Gansberghelaan 96, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium

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/content/journals/10.1163/156854109x448375
2010-01-01
2016-12-07

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