Parasites of skipjack, Katsuwonus pelamis, from Madeira, Eastern Atlantic

Abstract

Skipjack tuna, Katsuwonus pelamis, is a tropical species of economic importance for fisheries around the world. It occurs seasonally in subtropical waters around Madeira archipelago, in the warmer months. In this study, a parasitological analysis was carried out on a sample of 30 skipjack caught near Madeira Island. A total of 24 parasite taxa were found in this sample. The skipjack parasite community detected was characterized by a wide diversity of parasites, with a predominance of adult didymozoid trematodes, and high prevalences of Tentacularia coryphaenae cestode larvae and Anisakis sp. larvae. Microhabitat distribution of gill parasites was assessed for the most prevalent species, and correlations between parasite abundance and various host features such as size, condition, and fat content were investigated. Parasite taxa which might be useful as biological tags in future studies of skipjack migrations in the Eastern Atlantic were selected.

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Funding

Margarida Hermida was financially supported by a post-doctoral grant form ARDITI (Regional Agency for Development of Research, Technology and Innovation of Madeira), Project M1420-09-5369-FSE-000001. Bárbara Cavaleiro was financially supported by a research grant within the project OceanWebs (PTDC/MAR-PRO/0929/2014). This study was partially supported by the Oceanic Observatory of Madeira Project (M1420-01-0145-FEDER-000001-Observatório Oceânico da Madeira-OOM).

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Correspondence to Margarida Hermida.

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Section Editor: Shokoofeh Shamsi

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Hermida, M., Cavaleiro, B., Gouveia, L. et al. Parasites of skipjack, Katsuwonus pelamis, from Madeira, Eastern Atlantic. Parasitol Res 117, 1025–1033 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-018-5778-x

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Keywords

  • Atlantic
  • Katsuwonus pelamis
  • Madeira
  • Parasites
  • Portugal
  • Skipjack
  • Tuna