Biological Invasions (2017) 19, 3229-3242
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Unintentional introductions of microscopic organisms associated with forest insects
Biological Invasions 19 (11), 3229-3242
Abstract: International trade and travel are devastating native flora and fauna in many countries through the intentional and/or unintentional introduction of exotic organisms. Pathway control appears to be particularly effective for microscopic organisms such as mites, nematodes, and fungi that are difficult to see with the naked eye. However, taxonomic and ecological information on such organisms is scarce, sometimes causing time lags or failure in eradication programs. Several groups of mites, nematodes, and fungi commonly share a habitat with insects or use them as dispersal agents (phoresy). Some exotic mites and nematodes are introduced simultaneously with exotic insects, sometimes in wood materials. In Japan, mites, nematodes, and fungi have been collected from lucanid beetles introduced as pets from Southeast Asia. While no lethal nematode species have been collected from lucanid beetles, one hemolymph-sucking mite species, inhabiting the sub-elytral space of its native host, is able to easily switch to the Japanese beetle, Dorcus rectus, killing the insect. Yeasts have also been reported on exotic beetles and laboulbeniomycetes have been found on mites associated with the beetles, although their interactions are unknown. Despite the lack of information available about other mites, nematodes, and fungi associated with intentionally and unintentionally introduced forest insects, our analysis of insect species listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature suggests that unintentional introductions of the microscopic organisms are quite common as a consequence of the existence of symbiotic relationships such as phoresy and parasitism.
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Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
environment - cropping system/rotation
population dynamics/ epidemiology
Pest and/or beneficial records: