Nematodes

Authored by: Robert McSorley

Handbook of Soil Sciences Properties and Processes

Print publication date:  November  2011
Online publication date:  November  2011

Print ISBN: 9781439803059
eBook ISBN: 9781439803066
Adobe ISBN:

10.1201/b11267-33

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Abstract

Nematodes, or roundworms, which are common in most habitats, are a diverse group of invertebrates, including forms that inhabit marine, freshwater, or terrestrial habitats, as well as parasites of man and other vertebrates and of insects and other invertebrates. Many different kinds of nematodes inhabit soil, but while often present in large numbers, they often go unnoticed because of their cryptic habits and microscopic size, usually 0.5–2.0 mm in length. Some of the soil-inhabiting forms are plant parasites that are economically important in agriculture (Barker et al., 1998). Over 15,000 species of nematodes have been described (Poinar, 1983), but many more species remain unknown, and it is common to encounter undescribed species in most soil habitats.

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