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Effect of Mounting Methods On Taxonomic Characters of Adult Male Mermithids (Nematoda: Mermithidae)

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For more content, see Nematology.

Different methods of killing, fixing and processing to mounting medium for adult males of Romanomermis culicivorax and Gastromermis sp. were tested and compared. Qualitative characters used in species diagnosis, particularly head shape and cuticle thickness, and quantitative characters were differentially altered by the methods tested. No method produced specimens with all the characters of live individuals. The best results were obtained after killing by immersion in water at 65° for 3s, fixing in TAF for 1 week and processing to glycerol by Seinhorst's method. Romanomermis culicivorax is currently distinguished from R. iyengari by fixation artifacts and is a species inquirenda. Interbreeding experiments are required to determine the taxonomic status of R. culiciaorax.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Zoology and Applied Entomology, Imperial College, Ashurst Lodge, Ascot, Berks, England


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