What Are Nematodes?
Nematodes are predominantly tiny aquatic roundworms that thrive in nearly all environments on earth. They are the largest group of multicellular species in the animal kingdom, making up about four-fifths of animal life on earth. Some species are parasites of humans or animals. Others parasites plants and can cause economic losses in various food, ornamental and industrial crops. Some species are considered beneficial as they help in soil nutrient recycling. They feed on soil fungi, bacteria, algae, arthropods, or other nematodes. Also, nematodes are one of the favorite model organisms in studies on molecular genetics. This workgroup primarily focuses on developing and extending information about plant-parasitic and beneficial nematodes.
California Nematology Information
Crop damage is typically related to the population density of plant-parasitic nematodes at seeding or planting although plant species and cultivar response as well as soil biotic and abiotic factors may modify the crop injury extent. A Nematology Workgroup project compiled crop damage thresholds for some important nematode pests in California.