Abstract

A new species of Acanthocephaloides was recovered in the intestine of Symphurus plagiusa, the blackcheek tonguefish, and Cyclopsetta chittendeni, the Mexican flounder, from the Campeche coast, Mexico. The new species is characterized by having proboscis hooks arranged in 14 to 16 longitudinal rows, with 6–7 rooted hooks per row, a trunk covered with small cuticular spines (except in the zone of gonopore or bursa), a bursa without sensory structures, and the relative position of male post-equatorial reproductive system. The prevalence of Acanthocephaloides plagiusae n. sp. from S. plagiusa was low (0–7.3%) from July to October and high (29.4–40%) in November, January, and March. Similarly, the prevalence of A. plagiusae n. sp. from Cyclopsetta chittendeni was low (1.7%) in July and high (5.8%) March. Both hosts exhibited low (0.1–3.4) mean abundance. The variation in prevalence could be explained by the seasonal freshwater discharge from rivers, which affects the dispersal of parasites and the distribution of the host. Pathology changes, such as inflammation, loss of intestinal folds, increased mucous and rodlet cells, and detachment of intestinal epithelium, were associated with the proboscis hooks and spiny surface of A. plagiusae. This is the first record of an Acanthocephaloides species from a Mexican coastal zone.

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