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Pest Description
IDENTITY: Scientific name: Meloidogyne citri
Zhang, Gao, & Weng, 1990
 Common name: A citrus root-knot nematode

NOTES ON TAXONOMY AND BIOLOGY: Female M. citri have an oval cuticular perineal pattern marked by coarse and fine striae. Dorsal arch is low or moderately high. Lateral lines are indistinct .This root-knot nematode has sedentary endoparasitic habits. Second-stage juveniles (J2) penetrate host roots where they establish a specialized feeding site (giant cells) in the stele. As J2 develop, they cause root swellings and become swollen females. Females rupture root cortex and often protrude from the root surface with egg masses. J2 emerge from the egg masses and migrate in the soil.

GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION: This root-knot nematode occurs only in China.

HOSTS: Meloidogyne citri infects and reproduces on citrus such as Satsuma (Citrus unshiu), sour orange (C. aurantium), and trifoliate orange (Poncirus trifoliata). The only known non-citrus host is tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) (Vovlas and Inserra, 2000).

CROP LOSSES: Quantification of the damage induced by this root-knot nematode to citrus in China is not available.

MEANS OF MOVEMENT AND DISPERSAL: Through root material, soil debris and by poorly sanitized bare root propagative plant material.

RATING: (M) A moderate priority rating was given for this nematode, based on consideration given to the econominc importance of citrus, a perennial crop, and the limited information available on the host range and pathways of entry for this nematode.

    Vovlas N., and R. N. Inserra. 1996. Distribution and parasitism of root-knot nematodes on citrus. Nematology Circular No. 217, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Plant Industry, Gainesville, FL, USA.
    Vovlas, N. and R. N. Inserra. 2000. Root-knot nematodes as parasites of citrus. 2000 Procedings of the International Society of Citriculture (In press).
    Zhang, S., R. Gao, and Z. Weng. 1990. Meloidogyne citri n. sp. (Meloidogynidae), a new root-knot nematode parasitizing citrus in China. Journal of Fujian Agricultural College 19:305-311.