Author(s): Tounou AK, Kooyman C, DouroKpindou OK, Poehling HM
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Abstract The interaction between two pathogens, the microsporidian Paranosema locustae Canning and the fungus Metarhizium anisopliae var. acridum Driver and Milner was studied under laboratory conditions in an attempt to develop an improved method of microbial control for the desert locust, Schistocerca gregaria Forskål. Fifth-instar locust nymphs, reared in the laboratory, were treated with various concentrations of one of the two pathogens or with both pathogens. The numbers of locusts killed were recorded each day and the production of pathogen spores within the dead locusts was assessed at the end (day 21) of each experiment. Locust nymphs treated with both P. locustae and M. anisopliae died sooner than nymphs infected with only one of the pathogens. At the lower concentrations of pathogen tested, the effects of the two pathogens were additive. At the higher concentrations the combined effects were synergistic. In terms of locust mortality, there was no evidence of any antagonistic effects between the two pathogens. However, the production of spores by P. locustae was reduced considerably when the host insects were infected also with M. anisopliae. For example, nymphs treated initially with P. locustae and then treated 3 and 10 days later with M. anisopliae produced 3-20 times and 2.5-8 times fewer spores, respectively, than nymphs treated only with P. locustae. Hence, in areas where M. anisopliae is applied, the natural persistence of P. locustae in the local grasshopper and locust populations may be diminished.
This article was published in J Invertebr Pathol
and referenced in Journal of Plant Pathology & Microbiology