Abstract

The redclaw crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus (Decapoda: Parastacidae), is native to Australia but has been introduced to South Africa as a warm-water aquaculture species. In a South African natural waterbody, examined crayfish had high-intensity infections of 3 temnocephalan species on their body surfaces and within the branchial chambers. Temnocephalans were characterized using light and scanning electron microscopy and identified as Craspedella pedum, Diceratocephala boschmai, and Didymorchis sp. This is the first report of the introduction of Australian temnocephalans, C. pedum and Didymorchis sp., to Africa and expands the known distribution of these species beyond their presumptive native range. The present study also documents a naturalized population of C. quadricarinatus from a natural water body in South Africa, comprising a new geographical locality record.

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