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Pest Description
IDENTITY: Scientific name: Meloidogyne indica
Whitehead, 1968
 Common name: A citrus root-knot nematode

NOTES ON TAXONOMY AND BIOLOGY: Female M. indica have a cuticular perineal pattern with faint striae forming a distinct whorl in the tail area extending between vulva and anus. Second stage juveniles (J2) have tail terminus tapered with a broad and rounded tip. Dorsal arch is low. Lateral lines are indistinct (Whitehead, 1968). 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 sometimes protrude from the root surface with the egg masses. J2 emerge from the egg masses and migrate in the soil.

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

HOSTS: Meloidogyne indica infects and reproduces on citrus such as lime (Citrus aurantifolia) and sweet orange (C. sinensis). No information is available about other hosts (Vovlas and Inserra, 1996).

CROP LOSSES: The damage caused to citrus in India has not been assessed.

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 economic importance of citrus, a perennial crop, and the limited information available on the host range and pathways of entry for this nematode.

    Whitehead, A. G. 1968. Taxonomy of Meloidogyne (Nematoda: Heteroderidae) with descriptions of four new species. Transaction of the Zoological Society of London 31:263-401.
    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.