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Effects of the trematode Microphallus turgidus on locomotion and prey capture in the grass shrimp Palaemonetes pugio.

Authors
  • Khan, R N
  • Spiers, J A
  • Pung, O J
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of helminthology
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2003
Volume
77
Issue
4
Pages
327–330
Identifiers
PMID: 14627449
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, is common in estuaries and marshes along the east coast of the USA and is frequently infected with metacercariae of the trematode, Microphallus turgidus. To test whether or not M. turgidus has an effect on intermediate host behaviour, the length of time spent swimming and walking over 1 min and 3 min intervals and prey (Artemia) capture rates of uninfected grass shrimp and those infected with 1-10, 11-20 or 21-30 metacercarial cysts were compared. Uninfected shrimps spent significantly more time swimming than infected shrimps during the first minute of observation. There were no differences between the control and infected groups in terms of swimming at 3 min, walking at 1 and 3 min, or in numbers of prey captured. These results indicate that M. turgidus may induce little or no change in grass shrimp locomotion nor in prey capture behaviour. This is in contrast to other parasites that modify intermediate host behaviour to enhance their transmission to definitive hosts. Furthermore, these data support earlier studies indicating that M. turgidus does not affect the growth and survival of P. pugio.

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