A new species of Entobdella Blainville in Lamarck, 1818 (Monogenea: Capsalidae: Entobdellinae) from the Greenland halibut, Reinhardtius hippoglossoides

Acta Parasitol. 2015 Sep;60(3):361-70. doi: 10.1515/ap-2015-0051.


A previously undescribed species of Entobdella is reported from the skin of the Greenland halibut, Reinhardtius hippoglossoides (Pleuronectiformes, Pleuronectidae). Entobdella whittingtoni sp. nov. differs from other species of Entobdella, including skin parasites of the related pleuronectids Hippoglossus hippoglossus (Atlantic halibut) and H. stenolepis (Pacific halibut), in lacking papillae on the ventral surface of the haptor. Other characteristics of E. whittingtoni are as follows: the absence of vitelline follicles lateral to the pharynx thereby exposing gut caeca in this region of whole mounts; the presence of a circular feature of unknown function, resembling a rosette in sections, attached to the wall of the internal male accessory reservoir; the lack of eyes. Papillae are also absent from the ventral surface of the haptor of the gill-parasitic entobdelline Branchobdella pugetensis, a gill parasite of the pleuronectid Atheresthes stomias. This raises the question as to whether this gill parasite has evolved from a skin-parasitic ancestor similar to E. whittingtoni. An answer to this question requires a more detailed study of the male reproductive apparatus of B. pugetensis and the use of molecular techniques to explore the relationship between B. pugetensis and E. whittingtoni.

MeSH terms

  • Animal Structures / anatomy & histology
  • Animals
  • Female
  • Fish Diseases / parasitology*
  • Flounder / parasitology*
  • Greenland
  • Male
  • Microscopy
  • Parasitic Diseases, Animal / parasitology*
  • Platyhelminths / anatomy & histology
  • Platyhelminths / classification*
  • Platyhelminths / isolation & purification*
  • Skin / parasitology
  • Trematode Infections / parasitology
  • Trematode Infections / veterinary*