Abstract

The helminth community of the Mediterranean gull (Ichthyaetus melanocephalus) from the Calabria region in southern Italy was examined. Ten species of helminths, including 2 cestodes (Alcataenia larina and Tetrabothrius cylindraceus), 4 digeneans (Aporchis massiliensis, Brachylaima fuscatum, Cardiocephaloides longicollis, and Ornithobilharzia canaliculata), and 4 nematodes (Eucoleus contortus, Capillaria sp., Cosmocephalus obvelatus, and Paracuaria adunca), were found. The Mediterranean gull represents new host records for A. larina, A. massiliensis, B. fuscatum, and E. contortus; all species, except C. longicollis and O. canaliculata, constitute new locality records. The gastrointestinal helminth community of I. melanocephalus consisted of 9 species but, at the infracommunity level, species richness, diversity, and total helminth abundance are among the lowest reported from any gull species. Two cestode species accounted for 81% of all helminth specimens found.

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