5.7.2. Recovery of entomopathogenic nematodes from soil using greater wax moth larvae

Per Fan and Hominick (1991), this method can be used to screen local soils for the occurrence of entomopathogenic nematodes that infest wax moths.

  1. Collect soil of interest for use.
  2. Place 200-250 cm3 of soil in a plastic or glass dish (~300 cm3 in volume).
  3. Place five late instar G. mellonella larvae (late instar larvae are 250-350 mg) on the soil surface.
  4. Seal the dish with a tight lid to limit larvae escape.
  5. Incubate the dish at 20ºC.
  6. Replace the larvae (alive or dead) every 4-6 days. This should be done until larvae in the dish no longer die (i.e. all the living nematodes in the soil are “harvested”).
  7. Dissect all harvested larvae in saline
  8. Quantify the number of nematode adults.