In laboratory bioassays, Steinernema glaseri Steiner, Steinernema riobrave Cabanillas, Poinar & Raulston, Heterorhabditis bacteriophora Poinar, and Heterorhabditis marelatus Liu & Berry were capable of infecting and killing the bark scorpion, Centruroides exilicauda (Wood). Steinernema feltiae (Filipjev) and Steinernema carpocapsae (Weiser) failed to infect C. exilicauda at 22°C. S. glaseri, H. marelatus, and H. bacteriophora caused significant mortality at 22°C, indicating the potential role of these parasites as a biocontrol option. Efficacy of S. glaseri and H. bacteriophora was reduced in an assay conducted at 25°C. Only S. glaseri was able to reproduce in the target host. Dissection of scorpions at the end of the experimental periods revealed inactive juvenile S. riobrave, H. marelatus, and H. bacteriophora nematodes. Both mermithid and oxyurid nematodes have been documented as nematode parasites of scorpions, but rhabditids have not been reported until now. Field studies are warranted to assess the usefulness of entomopathogenic nematodes as biocontrol agents of bark scorpions.
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Vol. 98 • No. 5