Dendromonocotyle lasti n. sp. from the skin and Monocotyle caseyae n. sp. (Monogenea: Monocotylidae) from the gills of Himantura sp. (Dasyatidae) in Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia
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- Chisholm, L.A. & Whittington, I.D. Syst Parasitol (2005) 60: 81. doi:10.1007/s11230-004-1384-7
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Seven specimens of rays of the genus Himantura which could not be identified to species were collected from waters near Dunwich, Stradbroke Island, Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia. The five smallest specimens of Himanturasp. (disc width 218-302 mm; four female, one male) had a banded tail and the dorsal surface was uniformly grey/brown. The two largest individuals of Himantura sp. (disc widths 460, 533 mm; female and male, respectively) also had a banded tail but the grey/brown dorsal surface had white spots. Two new monogenean species (Monocotylidae: Monocotylinae) are described from both the ‘plain’ and ‘white-spotted’ specimens of Himantura. Dendromonocotyle lastin. sp. is distinguished from other species in the genus by the number of papillae on the haptor, by the morphology of the male copulatory organ and by the morphology of the proximal portion of the vagina. The muscular sheath which surrounds the male copulatory organ is also unique having sclerotised spines at the distal end. Dendromonocotyle species are skin parasites, but a total of five juvenile specimens of D. lasti were found on the gills of four rays. Monocotyle caseyae n. sp. from the gills is characterised by the morphology of the male copulatory organ and its accessory piece. One specimen of M. spiremae Measures, Beverley-Burton & Williams, 1990, originally described from the gills of Himantura fai Jordan & Seale off Heron Island, Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, Australia, was also found on the gills of one Himantura specimen. The site and host-specificity of the parasites and the identity of the hosts are discussed.