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Revista de biología marina y oceanografía

On-line version ISSN 0718-1957


FERNANDEZ-CISTERNAS, Ítalo; GEORGE-NASCIMENTO, Mario  and  OJEDA, F. Patricio. Comparison of parasite diversity of intertidal fish assemblages from central California and central Chile. Rev. biol. mar. oceanogr. [online]. 2017, vol.52, n.3, pp.505-521. ISSN 0718-1957.

The coasts of central Chile and central California are important points of comparison in the study of ecological convergence such as a host's parasite load because of their similar environmental conditions and the shared presence of many families of different species. In this study, the diversity of parasites in fish species from both zones was analyzed and compared to establish if there are similarities between them. The presence of 6 taxonomic groups of parasites was determined using published literature and databases for each location. A presence-absence matrix was created for the fish species studied in Chile and California, and a similarity analysis was carried out to prove whether the parasite loads of both zones were similar. The parasite taxa most frequently found in fish in central California were Digenea and Nematoda, whereas in central Chile the common taxa were Digenea, Annelida, Copepoda, Acanthocephala, and Nematoda. The similarity analysis showed that the parasite composition was different between zones. Nevertheless, overlaps were obtained in the parasitic diversity grouping the host in 3 host groups, one of which consists of hosts from both zones. This difference can be explained by the low parasitic diversity in the assemble of rocky intertidal fishes in California, potentially due to the limited amount of existing studies on intertidal fish parasites in California, along with other possible factors not explored in the present study.

Keywords : Intertidal fish; parasites; Chile; California; similarity; parasite diversity; convergent evolution.

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