, Volume 785, Issue 1, pp 115–126 | Cite as

A native-range source for a persistent trematode parasite of the exotic New Zealand mudsnail (Potamopyrgus antipodarum) in France

  • Claudia GérardEmail author
  • Osamu Miura
  • Julio Lorda
  • Thomas H. Cribb
  • Matthew J. Nolan
  • Ryan F. HechingerEmail author
Primary Research Paper


The globally successful invasive snail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum (Tateidae), is rarely parasitized except in its native New Zealand where it is infected as first intermediate host by at least 20 species of trematode parasitic castrators. In France and Poland, only one trematode parasitic castrator, belonging to the Aporocotylidae (the blood flukes of fishes), is known to infect P. antipodarum, and its origin remains a mystery. We investigated the genetic identities, taxonomic relationships, and prevalences of this parasite and other aporocotylids infecting P. antipodarum and closely related snails in a French stream, and throughout New Zealand and southeast Australia. ITS2 DNA sequences of the French parasite matched with Aporocotylid sp. I (sensu Hechinger, 2012) from P. antipodarum in New Zealand. Hence, the aporocotylid parasite in Europe most likely originated from the native range of the introduced host. Aporocotylid sp. I was rare in both native and invasive ranges, infecting overall less than 1 out of 1,000 snails. The parasite and its host have a persistent relationship in France, as they both were repeatedly encountered over a period of 14 years. Our molecular phylogeny also reveals that this parasite is part of a diverse and poorly known group of aporocotylids in New Zealand and southeastern Australia.


Invasive species Introduced parasite Tateidae Aporocotylidae Molecular phylogeny 



The New Zealand and Australian field work was supported by the US National Sea Grant (#s R/ANS-210). This study was also facilitated by JSPS KAKENHI Grant Number 25840160. We thank Dr. Ash Bullard for comments on our initial phylogenetic tree, Dr. Thomas Trancart for statistical assistance, and the editors and referees for helpful comments on the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All of the authors read and approved the paper, which has not been published previously nor is it being considered by any other peer-reviewed journal. The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudia Gérard
    • 1
    Email author
  • Osamu Miura
    • 2
  • Julio Lorda
    • 3
    • 4
  • Thomas H. Cribb
    • 5
  • Matthew J. Nolan
    • 6
  • Ryan F. Hechinger
    • 7
    Email author
  1. 1.Ecosystèmes, Biodiversité, Evolution (UMR ECOBIO 6553), Université de RennesRennesFrance
  2. 2.Oceanography Section, Science Research CenterKochi UniversityNankokuJapan
  3. 3.Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Marine BiologyUniversity of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  4. 4.Tijuana River National Estuarine Research ReserveImperial BeachUSA
  5. 5.School of Biological SciencesUniversity of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia
  6. 6.Department Pathology and Pathogen Biology, Royal Veterinary CollegeUniversity of LondonHatfieldUK
  7. 7.Scripps Institution of Oceanography-Marine Biology Research DivisionUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA

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