Letter to the editor referencing “The apparent kleptoparasitism in fish-parasitic gnathiid isopods” 10.1007/s00436-018-6152-8
Parasitism is a type of interaction between two organisms in which one organism benefits from the other on the latter’s cost. Numerous sub-types of parasitism have been recognised, yet there is no concise, strict terminology available that provide a clear criteria for identifying between subtypes. For philosophical reasons, it might be impossible to provide such a frame (Minelli et al. 2006; Haug 2018). Still, it is worth discussing the use of certain terms for describing observed organismic interactions, just to avoid possible misunderstanding.
For this reason, it is necessary to comment on the applied terminology in a recent paper by Shodipo et al. (2018). The authors report on a unique case of interaction between conspecific isopodan crustaceans parasitising on fishes: parasitic gnathiid crustaceans feeding on the blood meal of other gnathiids. This observation is of crucial importance concerning the biological interaction, as it drastically expands the...
JTH is kindly funded by the Volkswagen Foundation with a Lichtenberg Professorship. We also thank C. Haug and J.M. Starck, both Munich, for the longstanding support.
This study is funded by the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD; Research Grants–Doctoral Programmes in Germany, Reference no. 91693832, SvdW) and is hereby acknowledged.
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