Ann. Limnol. - Int. J. Lim.
Volume 42, Number 4, December 2006
|Page(s)||251 - 260|
|Published online||15 February 2009|
Occurrence of Branchiobdellida (Annelida : Clitellata) on freshwater crayfish in Croatia
Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb, Rooseveltov trg 6, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
2 Department of Science and Math, University of Maine at Presque Isle, 181 Maine Street, Maine 04769, USA
Corresponding author: email@example.com
There is very little information on the genus Branchiobdella and the species relationships with their freshwater crayfish hosts in Croatia. Therefore, a base-line study was needed so that future changes in available habitat brought about by urban development and the probable introduction of non-native species can be accurately assessed. This investigation used preserved freshwater crayfish collected from across Croatia between 1995 and 2005 as its source of the ectosymbionts. Crayfish species included Astacus astacus, A. leptodactylus, Austropotamobius pallipes, A. torrentium, and the allochtonous North American species, Orconectes limosus. Only native European species of branchiobdellids were found: Branchiobdella astaci, B. parasita, B. pentodonta, B. hexodonta, B. italica, and B. balcanica, and this is the first report on the occurrence of these species, apart from B. italica, in Croatia. The distribution of these branchiobdellidans is compared with climatic and river drainage systems, and literature reports of populations in other countries in the region.
Key words: Branchiobdellidans / distribution / epibionts / freshwater crayfish / Croatia
© Université Paul Sabatier, 2006
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