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Revista chilena de historia natural

Print version ISSN 0716-078X


DIAZ, FREDDY  and  GEORGE-NASCIMENTO, MARIO. Temporal stability in parasite infracommunities of the blenny Scartichthys viridis(Valenciennes, 1836) (Pisces: Blenniidae) on the central coast of Chile. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2002, vol.75, n.4, pp.641-649. ISSN 0716-078X.

Parasite infracommunities of the blenny Scartichthys viridis (Pisces: Blenniidae) are compared among three samples taken within a 17-month period during three consecutive years (1999-2001), from intertidal pools at Las Cruces (33°27' S, 71°37' W), central Chile. Our goal is to assess if the richness, diversity, abundance and composition of parasite infracommunities are persistent or not through chronological time, as well as throughout the ontogeny of this herbivorous intertidal blenny. Ten parasitic taxa were found in ca. 89 % of all 63 host blennies examined, eight of which were metazoans. Protozoans were looked for in the last 2 years of the study only. Seventy five percent of all eight metazoan taxa occurred in all three years, one was absent in one year, and another was present in one only. Most of the blennies harbored protozoans. Prevalence of protozoan Cryptobia sp. was high in both years and lower in Trichodina sp. In the overall sample, total host body length was a relevant predictor of the variations in composition, richness, total abundance and diversity of parasite infracommunities. In contrast, the year of sampling was not, especially when infracommunities compared came from hosts of similar body size. These results agree with those of parasite infracommunities found in other fish host species in Chile, in that there is low compositional and aggregated variability along chronological time. The relative extension of ontogenetic versus chronological time is a subject to be explored further with respect to the amount of differentiation in these assemblages.

Keywords : temporal stability; parasite infracommunities; Scartichthys viridis; Chile.

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