Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Diversity".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2023) | Viewed by 14558

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Joint Directorate of the Mordovia State Nature Reserve and National Park “Smolny”, 30 Krasnaya Str., 430005 Saransk, Republic of Mordovia, Russia
Interests: biodiversity conservation; insects; reptiles; amphibia; protected areas; nature conservation
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Guest Editor
Samara Federal Research Scientific Center RAS, Institute of Ecology of Volga River Basin RAS, 10 Komzina Street, 445003 Togliatti, Russia
Interests: parasites (helminths) of amphibians (Amphibia); fauna and ecology of helminths; community and biodiversity of helminths

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

For many years, researchers have been putting forward estimates of the relative biodiversity of parasites on the planet. According to such estimates, parasites make up from one third to more than half of the species on Earth. Despite the obvious uncertainty of these such statements, the biodiversity of parasites is believed to be far from well studied. Do we really know much about the diversity of parasites on the planet or individual geographical areas? Under what conditions are there more or less parasites? Does climate change affect the diversity of parasites? How far have we come to becoming aware of this diversity? Can we explain the distribution of parasites among the host taxa? Despite their potential negative consequences, parasites can be used as targets for biological conservation and research on the evolutionary and ecological effects of parasitism. These goals serve to expand our knowledge about the species diversity of parasites. In recent years, human influence has been increasing on ecosystems. Many of the observed changes are unprecedented in terms of effect size and rate of change. In such conditions, the host animals experience significant loads and, together with them, the parasite communities also undergo changes. Therefore, we must use the close relationship between the wealth of host species and the wealth of parasite species to create diversity maps for entire groups of parasites and individual species.

Dr. Alexander B. Ruchin
Dr. Igor V. Chikhlyaev
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • biodiversity
  • parasite communities
  • parasitofauna
  • vertebrates
  • climate impact
  • new species

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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34 pages, 3020 KiB  
Article
A Comprehensive Update on Helminth Parasite Biodiversity and Richness in Peruvian Amphibians
by Jhon D. Chero, Celso L. Cruces, Edson R. Cacique, Jodie A. Ponce, José Iannacone, Lorena Alvariño, Lidia Sanchez, Gloria Sáez, Jorge Lopez and Reinaldo José Da Silva
Diversity 2023, 15(12), 1169; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15121169 - 24 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1222
Abstract
This study aimed to comprehensively update and expand the knowledge on the diversity and richness of helminth parasites found in Peruvian amphibians. A systematic search was conducted across primary databases, encompassing both indexed and non-indexed articles, to compile the most recent data. As [...] Read more.
This study aimed to comprehensively update and expand the knowledge on the diversity and richness of helminth parasites found in Peruvian amphibians. A systematic search was conducted across primary databases, encompassing both indexed and non-indexed articles, to compile the most recent data. As of the present study, a total of 83 distinct helminth taxa have been documented in association with 78 anuran species of the order Anura, marking a 176.7% increase from previously recorded figures. Nematodes exhibited the highest species richness, totalling 52 taxa (62.65%), followed by trematodes (21 taxa, 25.3%), acanthocephalans and cestodes (4 taxa each, 4.8%), and monogeneans (2 taxa, 2.4%). The overwhelming majority (85.5%) of the collected parasites (71 taxa) were identified as mature helminths, with the remaining 14.5% (12 taxa) in their larval stages. Notably, Cosmocerca brasiliense Travassos, 1925 (Cosmocercidae), and Physaloptera sp. (Physalopteridae) were the most prevalent nematodes, having infected the broadest range of host species. Rhinella marina Linnaeus, 1758 (Bufonidae), emerged as the anuran host with the highest diversity, harboring 17 distinct helminth species. These findings underscore the crucial role of helminth parasites in shaping amphibian ecosystems and their significance as bioindicators of environmental health. Protecting both amphibian hosts and their associated helminth parasites is paramount, as it is intrinsically linked to the preservation of ecological equilibrium within these ecosystems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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14 pages, 4057 KiB  
Article
Gastrointestinal Nematodes and Protozoa in Small and Large Ruminants from Rural Agro-Climatic Regions of Northern India
by Anuja Sharma, Shilpa Sharma, Shilippreet Kour, Achhada Ujalkaur Avatsingh, Kahkashan Perveen, Jamilah A. Alsulami and Nasib Singh
Diversity 2023, 15(11), 1131; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15111131 - 4 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2020
Abstract
Gastrointestinal nematode parasites and gastrointestinal protozoan parasites are considered detrimental to the livestock population and manifest production-limiting effects. Small and large ruminants (cattle, buffalo, goats, and sheep) are important components of the rural economy of northern India. However, the epidemiology of gastrointestinal parasites [...] Read more.
Gastrointestinal nematode parasites and gastrointestinal protozoan parasites are considered detrimental to the livestock population and manifest production-limiting effects. Small and large ruminants (cattle, buffalo, goats, and sheep) are important components of the rural economy of northern India. However, the epidemiology of gastrointestinal parasites in this agro-climatic region has not been studied extensively. In this study, the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites was determined in 163 animals, including cattle (n = 86), buffalo (n = 11), goats (n = 48), and sheep (n = 18) from 26 sampling sites by copro-parasitological analysis. The prevalence values of 94.47% and 66.87% were recorded for the nematodes and protozoa, respectively. The group-wise prevalence of gastrointestinal nematode parasites was 95.3%, 90.9%, 93.7%, and 94.4% in cattle, buffalo, goats, and sheep, respectively, whereas for gastrointestinal protozoan parasites, the respective values were 70.9%, 54.5%, 60.4%, and 72.2%. Copromicroscopy revealed ten genera of nematodes—Ascaris, Capillaria, Cooperia, Haemonchus, Nematodirus, Oesophagostomum, Ostertagia, Strongyloides, Trichostrongylus, Trichuris, and one protozoan genus—Eimeria. The prevalence of Trichostrongylus spp. was highest in buffaloes, whereas in cattle, Ascaris spp. were predominant. In both goats and sheep, Haemonchus contortus was found to be predominant. The highest prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites was recorded in the rainy season. These findings indicate the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in the ruminant population in this region and necessitate the implementation of preventive and control strategies for effective animal health management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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13 pages, 8820 KiB  
Article
A New Species of Vampirolepis (Cestoda: Cyclophyllidea: Hymenolepididae) from the Bat Artibeus lituratus (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae) in the Amazon Rainforest, Brazil
by Michele Maria dos Santos, Raquel de Oliveira Simões, Paulo Sérgio D’Andrea, Rair de Sousa Verde, Arnaldo Maldonado Júnior, Reina Isabel Argueta Cartagena, Daniel Guimarães Ubiali and José Luis Luque
Diversity 2023, 15(6), 791; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15060791 - 19 Jun 2023
Viewed by 1333
Abstract
The Amazon biome has a great diversity of bat species. In the state of Acre, Brazil, there is an estimated occurrence of 64 bat species with the species of the genus Artibeus as one of the most abundant. Despite their abundance and widespread [...] Read more.
The Amazon biome has a great diversity of bat species. In the state of Acre, Brazil, there is an estimated occurrence of 64 bat species with the species of the genus Artibeus as one of the most abundant. Despite their abundance and widespread distribution within the biome, the helminth fauna from Amazonian bats is still poorly known. In this way, the objective of this study is to describe a new species of cestode from the genus Vampirolepis found in A. lituratus, collected at the Parque Estadual do Chandless, a natural preserved area, located in the Purus River Basin, Southwest Amazon, the state of Acre. The new species of Vampirolepis is distinguished from the others by the number and size of hooks, testes disposition, size of the cirrus sac, ovaries and internal and external seminal vesicles. Additionally, molecular study showed that this forms a paraphyletic clade with Vampirolepis elongatus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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15 pages, 54254 KiB  
Article
Diversity and Distribution of Helminths in Wild Ruminants of the Russian Arctic: Reindeer (Rangifer tarandus), Muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus), and Snow Sheep (Ovis nivicola)
by Olga A. Loginova, Sofya B. Rozenfeld, Taras P. Sipko, Ivan A. Mizin, Danila V. Panchenko, Kasim A. Laishev, Mikhail G. Bondar, Leonid A. Kolpashchikov, Aleksandr R. Gruzdev, Pavel S. Kulemeev, Dennis I. Litovka, Mariia N. Semerikova, Viktor N. Mamontov, Evgeniy G. Mamaev and Sergei E. Spiridonov
Diversity 2023, 15(5), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15050672 - 16 May 2023
Viewed by 2011
Abstract
The Russian Arctic supports wild sympatric ruminants and their data-deficient helminths. In this study, we: (1) collected fecal samples of wild and semiwild reindeer (Rangifer tarandus), muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus), and snow sheep (Ovis nivicola) across Palearctic North [...] Read more.
The Russian Arctic supports wild sympatric ruminants and their data-deficient helminths. In this study, we: (1) collected fecal samples of wild and semiwild reindeer (Rangifer tarandus), muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus), and snow sheep (Ovis nivicola) across Palearctic North territories: Arkhangelsk Oblast (including Novaya Zemlya archipelago), Karelia and Sakha Republics, Kola, Yamal, Taimyr, and Chukotka Peninsulas, Bering, Svalbard, and Wrangel Islands; (2) conducted a coprological survey (noninvasive life-time method preferable for protected animals) to obtain eggs and larvae of helminths inhabiting digestive, respiratory, nervous, and muscular systems; (3) identified helminths according to their morphology and DNA sequences; (4) estimated parasite load per host; (5) analyzed our findings. Varestrongylus eleguneniensis (in reindeer) was reported for the Palearctic for the first time, while Orthostrongylus sp. was reported both for R. tarandus and for the Palearctic for the first time. Capillarid-type eggs were reported for snow sheep for the first time. The question of the role of wild Arctic ruminants as vectors for rotifers was raised. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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16 pages, 3235 KiB  
Article
The Species Diversity Assessment of Azygia Looss, 1899 (Digenea: Azygiidae) from the Volga, Ob, and Artyomovka Rivers Basins (Russia), with Description of A. sibirica n. sp.
by Konstantin S. Vainutis, Anastasia N. Voronova, Alexander N. Mironovsky, Oksana N. Zhigileva and Alexander E. Zhokhov
Diversity 2023, 15(1), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15010119 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1930
Abstract
This study is devoted to the investigation of Azygia (Digenea: Azygiidae) species diversity using classical morphological, recent molecular tools (28S rRNA and cox1 mtDNA for genetic-based inference) and robust statistical techniques (Principal component analysis, PCA). The analysis revealed that the genus Azygia included [...] Read more.
This study is devoted to the investigation of Azygia (Digenea: Azygiidae) species diversity using classical morphological, recent molecular tools (28S rRNA and cox1 mtDNA for genetic-based inference) and robust statistical techniques (Principal component analysis, PCA). The analysis revealed that the genus Azygia included four valid species: A. lucii, A. longa, A. hwangtsiyui, and A. sibirica n. sp. The distribution of the type species A. lucii was confirmed in the largest Russian rivers: the Volga and the Ob. The worms isolated from Perccottus glenii were determined as the Chinese species A. hwangtsiyui, according to the genetic data for the cox1 mtDNA gene, at 1.32–1.56%. The new species, Azygia sibirica n. sp, was described from Esox lucius in the Ob River and differentiated from the type species A. lucii by the smaller ovary, testes and prostatic sac, wider body, very narrow pharyngeal lumen and form of anterior margin of ovary. In addition, multivariate analysis and three methods for species delimitation (ABGD, GMYC, bPTP) showed the subdivision of A. lucii and A. sibirica n. sp. into two separate groups, one from the Volga River and another from the Ob River, respectively. To conclude, A. lucii infects Esox lucius in the western (European part of Russia, the Volga River basin), and northern (Western Siberia, the Ob River basin) parts of Russia; A. sibirica n. sp. has also been found to infect Esox lucius in the Ob River, while A. hwangtsiyui infects Perccottus glenii in the South of the Russian Far East (the Artymovka River basin). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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Review

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19 pages, 1997 KiB  
Review
Trematodes of Land Birds from the Republic of Mordovia with a Checklist of Avian Trematodes of the Middle Volga Region (European Russia)
by Alexander A. Kirillov, Nadezhda Yu. Kirillova and Sergei N. Spiridonov
Diversity 2023, 15(3), 330; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15030330 - 23 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1464
Abstract
We studied the trematode fauna in land birds from the Republic of Mordovia (European Russia) in 2018–2022. In total, we identified 16 digenean species in 45 species of birds from the orders Passeriformes, Piciformes, Caprimulgiformes and Falconiformes. The trematodes Phaneropsolus micrococcus and Morishitum [...] Read more.
We studied the trematode fauna in land birds from the Republic of Mordovia (European Russia) in 2018–2022. In total, we identified 16 digenean species in 45 species of birds from the orders Passeriformes, Piciformes, Caprimulgiformes and Falconiformes. The trematodes Phaneropsolus micrococcus and Morishitum polonicum were recorded for the first time in the birds’ parasite fauna of Russia. We obtained the first data on helminths in Hippolais icterina and Ficedula albicollis from Russia and in Coccothraustes coccothraustes from the Middle Volga region. New host records resulting from our study include Brachylaima mesostoma from Coccothraustes coccothraustes; Urogonimus macrostomus from Sylvia atricapilla, Ficedula albicollis, Ficedula hypoleuca and Acrocephalus palustris; Plagiorchis maculosus from Ficedula albicollis and Hippolais icterina; and Lyperosomum alaudae from Ficedula hypoleuca. The common parasite of rallid birds Leucochloridium holostomum is recorded for the first time from Turdus merula in Russia. Taking into account the newly obtained data, we carried out a review of trematodes in land birds of the Middle Volga region, of which the Republic of Mordovia is a part. Currently, the list of land bird digeneans in the Middle Volga region includes 56 species. Among all the studied land birds, members of the order Passeriformes have the richest trematode fauna (33 species). The diversity of trematodes found in passerines is due to the large number of both individuals and species studied and the variety of habitats and diet preferences of these land birds. Most of the identified trematode faunas (47 species) are obligate parasites of land birds. Nine species parasitize land birds accidentally and/or facultatively. In the Middle Volga area, the fauna of trematodes is the most diverse in land birds of the Nizhny Novgorod region, where 31 species are revealed. Fewer species of trematodes are identified in birds from the Bashkortostan (20), Mordovia (17) and Samara regions (15). For the birds of Chuvashia and Tatarstan, only eight and one species of trematodes are known, respectively. Six trematode species, found in land birds, have veterinary and medical significance as potential pathogens of dangerous helminthiases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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21 pages, 675 KiB  
Review
Parasites, Bacteria and Viruses of the Edible Dormouse Glis glis (Rodentia: Gliridae) in the Western Palaearctic
by Alexander A. Kirillov, Nadezhda Yu. Kirillova and Alexander B. Ruchin
Diversity 2022, 14(7), 562; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14070562 - 14 Jul 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2386
Abstract
An overview of the parasites, bacteria and viruses of Glis glis (Rodentia, Gliridae) inhabiting the Western Palearctic is given. A total of 85 articles published from 1895 to 2021 were reviewed and analysed in our study. According to the literature’s data, 104 species [...] Read more.
An overview of the parasites, bacteria and viruses of Glis glis (Rodentia, Gliridae) inhabiting the Western Palearctic is given. A total of 85 articles published from 1895 to 2021 were reviewed and analysed in our study. According to the literature’s data, 104 species associated with G. glis are recorded: 4 viruses, 8 Protozoa, 6 Cestoda, 6 Trematoda, 4 Nematoda, 1 Heteroptera, 2 Anoplura, 39 Siphonaptera and 34 Acari. The most studied group is ectoparasites. To a lesser extent, parasitic worms in G. glis were studied. There is very little data about the dormouse protozoans and viruses. The most studied parasites, viruses and protozoans of G. glis are in Germany, where 21 species were noted. The largest number of parasites was found in the dormouse in Russia (22), but of two groups only: helminths and ectoparasites. Only 20 out of 104 parasite species recorded in G. glis are host-specific. Most parasites (60 species) found in G. glis have a Palaearctic and cosmopolitan distribution. Three viruses, six species of protozoa and three helminths have veterinary and medical significance as potential pathogens of dangerous zoonoses. Also, many species of fleas, mites and ticks found on G. glis are vectors of a number of dangerous vector-borne diseases in humans and domestic and wild animals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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Other

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11 pages, 8103 KiB  
Data Descriptor
Trematodes of Small Mammals (Erinaceomorpha, Soricomorpha, Rodentia and Chiroptera) in the Middle Volga Region (Russia)
by Nadezhda Yu. Kirillova, Alexander A. Kirillov, Victoria A. Vekhnik, Sergei V. Shchenkov, Alexander I. Fayzulin and Alexander B. Ruchin
Diversity 2023, 15(7), 796; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15070796 - 21 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 824
Abstract
In this study, we present our dataset containing up-to-date information about occurrences of trematodes in small mammals in the Middle Volga region (European Russia). The dataset summarizes micromammals’ trematode occurrences obtained by long-term field helminthological studies of soricomorphs, erinaceomorphs, bats and rodents during [...] Read more.
In this study, we present our dataset containing up-to-date information about occurrences of trematodes in small mammals in the Middle Volga region (European Russia). The dataset summarizes micromammals’ trematode occurrences obtained by long-term field helminthological studies of soricomorphs, erinaceomorphs, bats and rodents during a period of more than 20 years (1999–2022). Our studies of trematodes in micromammals were conducted using the method of complete helminthological necropsy. The dataset includes 7470 records of trematode occurrences in micromammals with 4483 digenean records in Samara Oblast, 2986 records in Republic of Mordovia and one trematode record in Ulyanovsk Oblast. Our dataset presents the data on 43 trematode species from 21 genera and 9 families found in the region studied. The data on trematodes from 28 species of micromammals belonging to 14 genera are presented. In total, the number of collected trematode specimens in our dataset is 153,050. Each occurrence record contains the trematode species name, basis of record, locality of finding, host species, site in host, date and authors of the record and species identification. All occurrence records are georeferenced. The dataset is based on the research of the staff of the Institute of Ecology of the Volga River basin of RAS and the Joint Directorate of the Mordovia Nature Reserve and National Park “Smolny”. The distribution and diversity of trematodes of small mammals in the Middle Volga region has not been completely studied, and further investigation may reveal both new occurrences of trematodes and new host records. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity of Parasites in Vertebrates in the Wildlife)
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