The round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) is an invasive species that has become one of the most abundant fish in the St. Lawrence River, Quebec, Canada over the past 15 yr. Since its introduction, the round goby has acquired a number of native parasites, yet little is known about the dynamics of parasite recruitment. To examine this question, young-of-the-year and juvenile round gobies were collected monthly from 2 localities in the river (Îles de la Paix, Île Dorval) from June through November 2012. At Îles de la Paix, round gobies (n = 180) were infected with 3 species of parasites, all larval stages (Diplostomum spp., Tylodelphys scheuringi, Neoechinorhynchus tenellus). Prevalence of the digenean Diplostomum spp. varied from 3.3 to 13.3%, and mean abundance from 0.03 to 0.53 from June through September, with a maximum in August. The digenean T. scheuringi was seen only in August, at a prevalence of 10.0% and a mean abundance of 0.53. The acanthocephalan N. tenellus was observed in June, August, and September, prevalence ranging from 3.3 to 10.0% and mean abundance from 0.03 to 0.27. Maximum infection for all 3 species occurred in August. All infected fish were ≥44 mm in total length (TL). Fish infected with more than 1 parasite species were >60 mm TL. No round goby (n = 178) was infected at Île Dorval. This study demonstrated that the invasive round goby starts to acquire parasite infections in the St. Lawrence River in the first year of life and may contribute to the transmission of some parasites within this ecosystem.

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