This order of ascomycetes contains around 1,000 species of saprophytic and plant pathogenic molds. Penicillium and Aspergillus are familiar members of this group. However, several species or strains are recognized as beneficial disease causing organisms that infect insects and other pests. This page deals with the latter group.
Sexual fruiting bodies (typically cleistothecia) are often rare. There are of variable size, from large forms like in truffels to microscopic structures. The cleistothecia are closed and contain round asci. The asexual conidia are typically spherical and are produced in chains. In the common molds, the conidiophore has a terminal, swollen "vesicle" from which the elongated, conidia-forming "phialides" originate, sometimes with a layer of intermediate cells.
This page only deals with species causing diseases of insect pests, for other groups see:
The following genera of entomopathogens are currently entered in the system: