Encyclopedia of Parasitology

Living Edition
| Editors: Heinz Mehlhorn

Schistocephalus solidus (syn. S. gasterostei)

  • Heinz Mehlhorn
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27769-6_2821-2


Greek: schisis = division; schizein = divide; kephale = head. Latin: solidus = solid.

Geographic Distributions/Epidemiology

In Northern hemisphere, since this parasite is bound to the occurrence of its intermediate fish host = stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus), which originally was a salt water fish, but became adapted to fresh water during the Pleistocene glacier period. This tapeworm is common in a broad spectrum of final hosts (coastbirds).

Morphology/Life Cycle

The adult tapeworms, which belong to the group of Pseudophyllidea and the family Diphyllobothriidae, parasitize the intestine of a broad range of birds, which feed fish. The final host excretes eggs containing the developing larva of the worm (= coracidium), which hatches from the egg and swims around with the help of their cilia. If these coracidia are ingested by the first intermediate host (Cyclopodid copepodes), they develop therein into the procercoid stage. If this first intermediate host is ingested by the...


Life Cycle Fresh Water Broad Spectrum Northern Hemisphere Salt Water 
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Further Reading

  1. Barber I (2013) Stickleback as model hosts in ecological and evolutionary parasitology. Trends Parasitol 11:556–566CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Zoomorphologie, Zellbiologie und ParasitologieHeinrich-Heine-UniversitätDüsseldorfGermany