n African Zoology - Ecology of metazoan parasites of (Osteichthyes : Clariidae) from the Nwanedi-Luphephe Dams of the Limpopo River System, South Africa

Volume 45, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X
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A total of 7748 parasites, belonging to 17 metazoan species, was recorded from 45 specimens of (Burchell, 1822) caught from the Nwanedi-Luphephe Dams, Limpopo River System, South Africa. All host specimens were parasitized by one or more metazoan parasite species. The parasite species included five monogeneans ( and ), four digeneans (type 3, sp. metacercaria, sp. and ), two nematodes (larvae and ), two cestodes (and ), two branchiurans (and ), one copepod () and one unidentified leech. Eleven parasites were satellite species, with low prevalence (<33%) and mean abundance (<12.9 parasites per host). The nematode larvae (L3) of sp. were the dominant species, constituting 56% of the total metazoans (100% prevalence, mean abundance and mean intensity 96.3). Infra- and component community species richness and diversity were high. The dominance of host-specific parasite species in the sharptooth catfish confirms that its metazoan fauna has a considerable degree of specificity. This study indicates the importance of ecological determinants of richness in metazoan communities of the sharptooth catfish from dams in an oligotrophic state.

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