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Revista chilena de historia natural

Print version ISSN 0716-078X


FLORES, KAREN  and  GEORGE-NASCIMENTO, MARIO. Parasite infracommunities of two blennid species, Scartichthys (Pisces: Blenniidae), at nearby localities off northern Chile. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2009, vol.82, n.1, pp.63-71. ISSN 0716-078X.

The infracommunities of metazoan parasites in two congeneric and sympatric marine fish species, Scartichthys viridis (Valenciennes 1836) and Scartichthys gigas (Steindachner 1876), were studied and compared between three localities of the intertidal rocky shore off the coast of northern Chile, near Iquique (20°32' S, 70°11' W), which were separated by no more than 6 km. Samples were collected between August and September 2005. The goal of this study was to assess the variability in richness, abundance, diversity, dominance and parasite composition between close localities sampled within a short period. In all, 2,110 parasite individuals were collected from the 134 hosts examined, and 14 parasite taxa were identified. There was great similarity in the aggregated and compositional properties of the infracommunities, both between host species, as well as among study sites. We interpret these results as indicating that ecological factors such as habitat use and dietary composition, and evolutionary factors, such as the close relatedness between Scartichthys species are the main causes influencing the high similarity found in parasite communities of these fish species.

Keywords : parasite infracommunities; Scartichthys viridis; Scartichthys gigas; Chile.

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