Cotton Nematodes: Your Hidden Enemies

William S. Gazaway


Nematodes cause millions of dollars in lost cotton production annually. Yet, many cotton growers are unaware of the tremendous impact these secretive pests have on their livelihood. In 1989, The Cotton Foundation and Rhone-Poulenc Ag Company established a committee, composed of plant pathologists and nematologists representing each of the major cotton states, to elucidate the impact of nematodes on cotton production and fiber quality. The first objective was to determine nematode distribution and population densities across the cotton belt. It was initiated in 1989 and completed in 1993. Survey results indicate that cotton nematode species are more widespread across the cotton belt than our original estimates and that three major nematode species account for nearly 100% of yield losses in cotton. The second objective of the project was to improve loss estimates of nematode damage to cotton yields and fiber quality. This phase of the project will begin in the spring of 1994. Educational materials from the preliminary results will be available to the cotton industry in the near future.

Reprinted from Proceedings of the 1994 Beltwide Cotton Conferences pp. 41 - 42
©National Cotton Council, Memphis TN

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Document last modified Sunday, Dec 6 1998