Three morphologically distinct types of sarcocysts (I, II, and III) were identified by light microscopy in tongues from 403 white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) collected in Florida (USA) over a 7-yr-period. Based on electron microscopy of representative examples of these sarcocysts, there were four distinctive wall structures. We concluded that one of these (Type I) was representative of Sarcocystis odocoileocanis and another (Type III) was representative of an unnamed species previously described from white-tailed deer in Montana. Type II could be divided further into two forms (IIA and IIB) that may represent two undescribed species or developmental stages of the same species. Sarcocystis odoi, another previously recognized sarcosporidian from white-tailed deer, was not found. Sarcocysts of Types I and II were distributed nonrandomly in tongue muscle, being more common in the basal portion, whereas Type III was distributed randomly throughout the tongue. Single infections (one of the three types) accounted for 63% of the infected deer, while double infections occurred in 28% and triple infections in 4%. Types I and II were found in deer throughout the state, but Type III occurred only in deer from southern Florida. In 1988 and 89, the statewide prevalences for Types I, II, and III were 57, 20, and 6%, respectively. Prevalences of Type I ranged from 94% in the panhandle region (northern Florida) to 34% in the southern part of the state. Prevalences of all three types increased with age.

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