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Metazoan parasites and food composition of juvenile Etmopterus spinax (L., 1758) (Dalatiidae, Squaliformes) from the Norwegian deep
Klimpel, S.; Palm, H.W.; Seehagen, A. (2002). Metazoan parasites and food composition of juvenile Etmopterus spinax (L., 1758) (Dalatiidae, Squaliformes) from the Norwegian deep. Parasitol. Res. 89(4): 245-251
In: Parasitology Research. Springer: Berlin; Heidelberg. ISSN 0932-0113, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Klimpel, S.
  • Palm, H.W.
  • Seehagen, A.

    A total of 37 juvenile Etmopterus spinax from the Norwegian Deep were examined for stomach contents and metazoan ecto- and endoparasites. These squaliform elasmobranchs were caught by benthopelagic net in May 2001 at a depth of 194-214 m. The euphausiid Meganyctiphanes norvegica and the teleost Maurolicus muelleri were the principal prey organisms. With increasing total length of E. spinax, the frequency of Meganyctiphanes norvegica prey decreased and that of M. muelleri increased. Seven different metazoan parasite species were found: adult Monogenea (2), larval and adult Cestoda (3), and larval Nematoda (2). The predominant parasites were an unidentified monocotylid monogenean and the cestode Aporhynchus norvegicus, with respective prevalences of infestation of 83.8% and 81.1%. The sites of infestation were the gills (Squalonchocotyle spinacis, Monogenea), nasal cavities (Monocotylidae indet.), body cavity (Lacistorhynchus tenuis, Cestoda), stomach wall and organs of the body cavity (Anisakis simplex, Nematoda), and stomach and spiral valve (A. norvegicus and Pseudophyllidea indet., Cestoda; Hysterothylacium aduncum, Nematoda). No other metazoan parasite taxa were found, and the musculature was free of parasites. Five new host and three new locality records were established. M. muelleri seems to be an important intermediate host for the endoparasitic nematodes which were found, with E. spinax serving as a paratenic host. E. spinax also serves as an intermediate host for the trypanorhynch cestode L. tenuis, and as the definitive host for the two monogeneans and the trypanorhynch A. norvegicus. The latter uses Meganyctiphanes norvegica as the second intermediate host in the Norwegian Deep. The relationship between the feeding ecology, habitat, and vagility of E. spinax and the resulting parasite fauna is discussed.

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