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THE POTENTIAL OF BACTERIA FOR THE MICROBIAL CONTROL OF GRASSHOPPERS AND LOCUSTS

  • B. Zelazny (a1), M.S. Goettel (a2) and B. Keller (a1)

Abstract

Bacteria have been implicated in disease epizootics observed in field populations and laboratory-reared locusts and grasshoppers. Two species [Serratia marcescens Bizio and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Schroeter) Migula] consistently infect locusts when ingested with food and can spread in laboratory populations. However, research on developing these organisms for microbial control of locusts and grasshoppers begun in the 1950s has not been continued. In recent years strains of Bacillus thuringiensis Berliner have been studied for activity against locusts and grasshoppers. Results of additional trials by the authors are reported. Among 393 B. thuringiensis isolates and 93 preparations of other sporeforming bacteria fed to nymphs of Locusta migratoria (L.) and/or Schistocerca gregaria Forsk., none has shown any pathogenicity to the insects. The recent discovery of novel B. thuringiensis strains active against various diverse pests and the many properties of a sporeforming bacterium that satisfy the requirements for a microbial control agent, and the development of Serratia entomophila as a promising agent for control of grass grubs, provide incentive to continue the search for an orthopteran-active sporeforming bacterium and to re-investigate the potential of non-sporeforming bacterial pathogens as microbial control agents of grasshoppers and locusts.

Des bactéries sont souvent impliquées dans les épizooties qui ravagent les populations naturelles de criquets et les populations expérimentales élevées en laboratoire. Deux espèces [Serratia marcescens Bizio et Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Schroeter) Migula] causent toujours des infections chez les criquets si elles sont ingérées avec la nourriture et peuvent se répandre dans les populations de laboratoire. Cependant, les efforts entrepris dans les années '50 pour raffiner ces organismes de façon à en faire des agents de lutte microbienne contre les criquets ont été arrêtés. Au cours des dernières années, l'efficacité de souches de Bacillus thuringiensis Berliner contre les criquets a été étudiée. Les résultats d'expériences additionnelles par les auteurs sont décrits. De 393 isolats de B. thuringiensis et 93 préparations d'autres bactéries sporogènes donnés en nourriture à Locusta migratoria (L.) et (ou) à Schistocerca gregaria Forsk., aucun ne s'est avéré pathogène pour les insectes. Récemment, la découverte de nouvelles souches de B. thuringiensis efficaces contre divers organismes nuisibles, les propriétés d'une bactérie sporogène qui répond aux critères d'un bon agent de lutte microbienne et l'amélioration des souches de Serratia entomophila, un agent prometteur de lutte contre les vers blancs des herbacées, sont autant de facteurs d'encouragement à continuer la recherche d'une bactérie sporogène efficace contre les orthoptères et à réexaminer le potentiel de bactéries pathogènes non sporogènes comme agents de lutte contre les criquets. [Traduit par la Rédaction]

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THE POTENTIAL OF BACTERIA FOR THE MICROBIAL CONTROL OF GRASSHOPPERS AND LOCUSTS

  • B. Zelazny (a1), M.S. Goettel (a2) and B. Keller (a1)

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