The digenetic community of 40 green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) was investigated at Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica. In total, 24,270 trematodes belonging to 29 species and 6 families including Clinostomidae 1, Microscaphidiidae 5, Paramphistomidae 2, Pronocephalidae 15, Rhytidodidae 2, and Spirorchiidae 4 were recorded from chelonians examined. Turtles harbored a mean of 7.63 ± 3.5 SD species. Only 3 species, i.e., Learedius learedi, Microscaphidium reticulare, and Pyelosomum cochlear, infected more than 50% of the hosts sampled. Learedius learedi was the most prevalent (97.5%) and the second most abundant species with a mean of 25.6 ± 21.6 SD. Only 1 core species, M. reticulare, was recovered from the gastrointestinal tract; it was the most abundant parasite, with a mean intensity of 477 ± 1,180 SD, and the second most prevalent (77.5%). Diversity values ranged from 0.10 to 2.10, with a mean of 1.00 ± 0.43 SD for the total component community and from 0.10 to 1.84, with a mean of 0.79 ± 0.41 SD, for the gastrointestinal component community. Species richness was the highest recorded from a sea turtle species. All digenetic species were recorded from Costa Rica for the first time. This represents the first report on the helminth community of the green turtle.

You do not currently have access to this content.