We examined the metazoan parasite fauna of the bigeye flounder, Hippoglossina macrops, in a latitudinal gradient of the southeastern Pacific (ca. 25°S–33°S) to assess whether their parasites show latitudinal and/or biogeographical patterns, and to determine if these patterns agree well with those observed for free-living organisms. In total, 331 fish from 6 localities were analyzed. Eighteen parasite species, including 5 ecto- and 13 endoparasites, were found in the bigeye flounder. Neoheterobothrium chilensis, Floridosentis sp., and Corynosoma australe were the most prevalent parasite species. Ecto- and endoparasites of H. macrops showed different latitudinal patterns. Only endoparasite species show a distributional pattern concordant with biogeographic areas recognized for free-living organisms; this finding was supported by cluster analyses showing 2 major divisions. The first joined the most northern localities (25°S–26°S), and the second consisted of 2 subgroups: (1) 28°S–30°S, and (2) 31°S– 32°S. A multivariate analysis of infracommunities showed significant differences in the parasitic load of H. macrops from different latitudes. The latitudinal differences in the prevalence and abundance of the parasites might be explained by differing oceanographic conditions in water masses. These physical conditions could affect the dispersal ability of the infective stages of ectoparasites, and produce zoogeographical breaks that could affect the distribution of intermediate hosts (invertebrate and vertebrate prey), subsequently affecting the transmission of endoparasites.
Biogeographic Patterns of Metazoan Parasites of the Bigeye Flounder, Hippoglossina macrops, in the Southeastern Pacific Coast
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M. T. González, R. Vásquez, E. Acuña; Biogeographic Patterns of Metazoan Parasites of the Bigeye Flounder, Hippoglossina macrops, in the Southeastern Pacific Coast. J Parasitol 1 April 2008; 94 (2): 429–435. doi: https://doi.org/10.1645/GE-1265.1
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