Davies, Ye, Kanzaki, Bartholomaeus, Zeng, & Giblin-Davis, 2015
Schistonchus is characterised by having the excretory pore
opening in the region of, or posterior to, the metacorpus; Ficophagus
by having the excretory pore opening very near the cephalic region; and
Martininema by having it opening at the anterior end of the
metacorpus. Several species of Schistonchus have a labial disc
but there is no evidence of a labial disc in either Ficophagus or
Martininema (Davies et al., 2015)..
Frequently found associated with sycones (enclosed infrutescences) of
Ficus spp. Primarily associated with Ficus syconia and agaonid wasps.
(Davies et al., 2015).
Ficophagus spp. are probably transported by fig wasps.
Many species of Ficophagus have been reported to grow and reproduce
within the syconia of various Ficus spp.. Some
Ficus spp. can host more than one species of Ficophagus
(Bartholomaeus et al., 2012).
syconium is an swollen fleshy receptacle which containing between 50 and
7000 ovaries, represented by florets, on its inner surface. It is closed off
from most organisms by the ostiole.
Syconia can be monoecious and
contain mainly female florets, and produce seeds and pollen. or dioecious
with male and female florets in different plants..
Iindividual florets inside the syconium are pollinated by fig wasps and then
develop into achenes or drupes, in which the seeds are enclosed by a layer
Consequently, the fig "fruit" is actually an enclosure contining many fruits
(between ten and thousands depending on the species).
The nematodes feed on fig epidermal cells, mature and lay eggs which
develop into males and females. These adults produce a new generation of
entomophilic females which mate, and penetrate the new generation of female
wasps. Thus when the wasps emerge, ready to seek fresh sycones, they carry
fertilised entomophilic nematodes in their haemolymph. The pre-reproductive
female nematode, which is the dispersal stage of Ficophagus and related
genera, use volatiles and cuticular hydrocarbons from the female pollinating
wasps to select the appropriate wasp vector (Davies et al. 2015).
Bartholomaeus, F., Davies, K.A., Ye, W. and Giblin-Davis, R.M. 2012.
Schistonchus (Aphelenchoididae) from Ficus benjamini in Australia, with
description of S. benjamiina sp.n. Nematology 13:1005-1013.
Davies, K.A., Ye, W., Kanzaki, N., Bartholomaeus, F., Zeng, Y. &
Giblin-Davis, R.M. (2015). A review of the taxonomy, phylogeny, distribution
and co-evolution of Schistonchus Cobb, 1927 with proposal of Ficophagus n.
gen. and Martininema n. gen. (Nematoda: Aphelenchoididae). Nematology 17:
761- 829. DOI: 10.1163/15685411-00002907
Davies, K.A., Bartlolomaeus, F., Li, D.L., Zhao, Z.Q., Ye, W. and
Giblin-Davis, R.M. 2020. Ficophagus (Nematoda: Aphelenchoididae) from
sycones of Ficus subgenus Urostigma, sections Malvanthera and Urostigma, in
eastern Australia. Nematology 22:627-653.7
Nickle, W.R. 1970. A Taxonomic Review of the Genera of
the Aphelenchoidea (Fuchs, 1937) Thorne, 1949 (Nematoda: Tylenchida) . J.
Zeng, W., D. Zhang, J. Huang, Y. Zeng, W. Ye.,
and R.M. Giblin-Davis. 2020. Ficophagus chaozhouensis n.
sp. (Nematoda: Aphelenchoididae), an associate of Ficus hirta Vahl
var. roxburghii (Miq.) King in China. Nematology 22:219-312.
Zheng, Y., Huang, J., Zhang, D., Zeng, W., Shi, R., Zhang, Y., Peng, Y.,
Ye, W., Giblin-Davis, R.M. 2019.