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Comparison of parasite communities in native and introduced populations of sexual and asexual mollies of the genus Poecilia

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The parasite communities of two molly species, the sexual Poecilia latipinna and the clonal Poecilia formosa, were investigated in four populations using a novel method applicable under field conditions. In two native populations from south Texas and two introduced populations from central Texas, four species of microparasites and eight species of macroparasites were recorded. Virtually no differences in the parasite diversity and species composition could be detected between the populations. Mollies from south Texas had a higher individual parasitization index of macroparasites. There was a negative correlation between the relative number of oocytes in gravid females and their individual macroparasite load.
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Keywords: Poecilia formosa; Poecilia latipinna; fitness consequences of parasites; gynogenetic reproduction; spatial variation in parasite infection

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Zentrum für Fisch- und Wildtiermedizin FIWI, Universität Bern, Länggass-Str. 122, CH-3001 Bern, Switzerland

Publication date: 2005-10-01

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