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Acta Amazonica

Print version ISSN 0044-5967

Acta Amaz. vol.42 no.3 Manaus  2012


First record of the parasite Trichodina heterodentata infesting the Amazonian pirarucu cultivated in Peru



During a parasitological survey of protozoans occurring in cultured fingerlings of pirarucu (Arapaima gigas), a group of researchers from the Institute for Investigation of the Peruvian Amazon, Peru and from the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil, reported for the first time the protozoan Trichodina heterodentata. This protozoan is exotic to the Amazon and one of the most widespread and potentially dangerous parasite of fish under poor water quality conditions. The present study reports not only the first occurrence of T. heterodentata in Peru but also the first record of this protozoan infesting the Amazonian pirarucu, one of the largest freshwater fish.

Wet smears of pirarucu were prepared for examination under an optical microscope. The robust, sickle-shaped denticle blade can easily characterize the species besides the presence of a variable thickness of denticle ray, prominent radial pins and the absence of any central inclusions (Photo). Originally described in the Philippines, T. heterodentata can be considered a parasite of emerging importance in freshwater fishes, as in cultured fish mortality can result from heavy infestations.



Correspondence to:
Maurício L. Martins
Departamento de Aquicultura, CCA, UFSC, Rod. Admar Gonzaga 1346, 88040-900, Florianópolis, SC, Brazil.



This research has counted with the financial support of CAPES and CNPq and is published in  Acta Amazonica  (Vol. 42, n.3).

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