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Revista Brasileira de Biologia

Print version ISSN 0034-7108

Abstract

ANDRADE, A. L. V.; PINEDO, M. C.  and  BARRETO, A. S.. Gastrointestinal parasites and prey items from a mass stranding of false killer whales, Pseudorca crassidens, in Rio Grande do Sul, Southern Brazil. Rev. Bras. Biol. [online]. 2001, vol.61, n.1, pp. 55-61. ISSN 0034-7108.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-71082001000100008.

The gastrointestinal tract of 14 false killer whales, 6 males and 8 females, stranded in June 1995 in southern Brazil, with total standard lengths from 338 to 507 cm, were analysed for endoparasites and food items. A pregnant female had a male foetus of 77.5 cm. Parasites were found in all 14 false killer whales. The nematode Anisakis simplex (Rudolphi, 1809) was found in the stomach of 57% of the animals and the acanthocephalan Bolbosoma capitatum (Linstow, 1889) Porta, 1908 was present in the intestine of all specimens and showed densities up to 600 m-1. An unidentified cestode (Tethrabothridae) was found also in the intestines of 14% of the individuals. The high infections of B. capitatum and A. simplex were not directly related with the cause of death. In the stomachs of four females, beaks of at least eight specimens of the oceanic and epipelagic species Ommastrephes bartramii (Lesueur, 1821) were found, with mantle lengths ranging from 189.8 to 360.9 mm. The distribution of O. bartramii in the coast of Rio Grande do Sul is consistent with false killer whales feeding in continental shelf waters.

Keywords : parasites; food items; Pseudorca crassidens; mass stranding.

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