African Zoology

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Aspects of the ecology of Cichlidogyrus philander collected from Pseudocrenilabrus philander philander from the Padda Dam, Gauteng, South Africa

Louise E. le Roux, A. Avenant-Oldewage, F.C. van der Walt


Cichlidogyrus philander was originally described from Pseudocrenilabrus philander philander in Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe. Specimens from four fish species were collected during this study over a 14-month period from the Padda Dam, Johannesburg, transported to the laboratory and killed. Following examination, only P. p. philander was found to be infected with C. philander – indicating strict host specificity. Parasite intensity varied from 0 to 184 specimens per fish. Although no significant correlation between season and the infection of specimens of C. philander occurred, a maximum mean intensity of 91.6 occurred in winter. The prevalence was 100% in 10 of the 14 surveys, with no preference for host sex. Mean intensity of infection correlated positively with total length of the host and more parasites were present on fish with a higher condition factor. The distribution on the gill arches shows no significant difference between the number of parasites from gill arches on the left and right sides of fish. More parasites were present on the third and second gill arches, with the majority dorsally, on the distal ends.Water quality variables showed no  correlation between prevalence, abundance or mean intensity of this parasite.

Key words: Cichlidogyrus philander, ecology of Cichlidogyrus, fish parasite, Monogenea, Pseudocrenilabrus philander philander.

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