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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 58:55-62 (2004)  -  doi:10.3354/dao058055

Metazoan parasite species in cultured mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis in the Thermaikos Gulf (North Aegean Sea, Greece)

Abdalnasser Rayyan1, George Photis2, Chariton C. Chintiroglou1,*

1Department of Zoology, School of Biology, Box 134, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 540 06 Thessaloniki, Greece
2Laboratory of Ichthyology and Fish Pathology, Veterinary Faculty, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 540 06 Thessaloniki, Greece
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: This is the first study on parasites of cultured Mytilus galloprovincialis L. in Greek waters, and is based on samples collected every 2 to 3 mo between September 2000 and November 2001 at 3 stations in the Thermaikos Gulf. Each sample comprised 40 mussels. We found 4 metazoan parasite species: hydroid Eugymnanthea inquilina, gill turbellarian Urastoma cyprinae, trematode Proctoces maculatus and gut copepod Mytilicola intestinalis. Of 840 mussels examined, 406 (48.3%) mussels were harbouring hydroids of E. inquilina, 278 (33.1%) were infested with U. cyprinae, 94 (11.2%) were infested with M. intestinalis, and only 7 (0.8%) were infested with P. maculatus. The prevalence and intensity of these parasites were related to temperature and pollution. Mussels infested with these parasites had significantly lower condition indices than non-infested mussels; larger mussels were more often infested than smaller ones.

KEY WORDS: Mytilus galloprovincialis · Parasites · Metazoa · Condition index

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