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Parasites in marine protected areas: success and specificity of monogeneans

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The effect of a marine protected area on the Lamellodiscus spp. monogenean community was tested by comparing the communities of parasites of Diplodus sargus inside and outside of the area. A total of 104 D. sargus were dissected harbouring 1280 monogeneans from the genus Lamellodiscus and belonging to 11 species. No modification in the global parasite community linked with the protection of the host populations was revealed. The most abundant and less specific parasite species, Lamellodiscus elegans, however, increased its abundance in the protected area. A significant relationship was found between parasite host range and the percentage of infected hosts. A significant relationship also occurred between epidemiological and genetic distances for the parasite species found. The results are discussed in term of parasite success and specificity and the importance of taking into account parasitism in the biological conservation of hosts.
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Keywords: Diplodus sargus; biological conservation; marine protected areas; monogeneans

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Laboratoire de Biologie Animale, UMR CNRS 5555, Université de Perpignan, 52, Avenue de Villeneuve, 66 860 Perpignan Cedex, France, 2: Laboratoire Arago, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, UMR CNRS 7628, BP 44, 66 651 Banyuls-sur-Mer, France and 3: Laboratoire d’Ichtyoécologie Tropicale et Méditerranéenne, Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, ESA CNRS 8046, Université de Perpignan, 52, Avenue de Villeneuve, 66 860 Perpignan Cedex, France

Publication date: 2004-02-01

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