Encyclopedia of Parasitology

Living Edition
| Editors: Heinz Mehlhorn

Leucochloridium Species

  • Heinz Mehlhorn
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27769-6_4006-1

The name comes from Greek leukos = white, chloros = slightly green. Tiny digenetic trematodes reaching about 1.5–2.6 mm in length and 1.2–1.4 mm in width. Their eggs are also very tiny (~24–30 μm × 16 μm) and are excreted within the feces of birds (e.g., tits, other singing birds). The adults are hermaphrodites and live attached at the cloacal wall of their hosts. The excreted eggs are ingested by so-called amber snails (Succinea putris) living in terrestric biotopes. Insides the snail’s gut a miracidium larva hatches from each egg and transforms into a sporocyst, inside which infectious cercariae are formed. The whole brood sacs containing the sporocysts or their protruding ends penetrate into the snail’s tentacles and initiate there strong pulsating movements which attract attention of the final hosts (birds). This induced pulsation is interpreted by some scientists as “active” manipulationof the parasite in order to enhance its chances to reach the final host and thus to become an...


Common Species Adult Worm Final Host Larva Hatch Digenetic Trematode 
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Further Reading

  1. Rietschel G (1972) Investigations on colour patterns of Leucochloridium sporocysts. Parasitol Res 40:61–68Google Scholar
  2. Rzad P, Hofsoe P, Panicz R, Nowakowski JK (2013) J Helminthol. doi:10.1017/S0022149x13000291Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

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