Prevalence and intensity of Cornudiscoides agarwali (Monogenoidea) on the gills of Day’s mystus (Mystus bleekeri) in relation to some ecological and biological factors from Arunachal Pradesh, India

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Summary

This work investigated the relationship of host size, seasons, and water quality parameters with the prevalence and intensity of Cornudiscoides agarwali on Mystus bleekeri collected from the Dikrong River in Arunachal Pradesh, India from February 2016 to January 2017. A total of 2760 specimens of C. agarwali were recovered from 114 individuals of M. bleekeri. The levels of mean intensity, but not the prevalence, of infection of C. agarwali were positively correlated with fish host size, peaking in the largest size class (45.20 ± 5.69 parasites/fish). The prevalence values had a statistically significant seasonal trend, reaching highest (100 %) during the pre-monsoon season, followed by 91.8% during the post-monsoon period and 87.5 % during the monsoon season. The levels of mean intensity of infection were also dependent on the seasons, reaching significantly higher levels during the pre-monsoon season (42.75 ± 4.18 parasites/fish). All water quality parameters measured were within the safety value recommended for freshwater aquaculture. Cornudiscoides agarwali maintained its prevalence above 87.5 % throughout the annual cycle, which means it was able to reproduce year-round in a non-polluted river. This could be an indication of monogenoidean community and population dynamics thriving best under optimum water quality parameters. Also, this article draws the attention of parasitologists and ichthyologists to a taxonomic problem of the misidentification of Mystus spp., and therefore, possibly of their parasitic monogenoids.

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