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Open Access item Natural infection of Lymnaea truncatula by the liver fluke Fasciola hepatica in the Porma Basin, León, NW Spain.

Authors:Manga-González, M. Yolanda
González Lanza, Camino
Otero-Merino, Cristina B.
Keywords:Fasciola hepatica, Lymnaea truncatula, Spain, Prevalence
Issue Date:1991
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
Citation:Journal of Helminthology 65(1): 15-27 (1991)
Abstract:For two years fortnightly malacological samplings were carried out to collect Lymnaea truncatula (Mollusca; Basommatophora) at five points in the upper and middle Porma river basin, León, Spain. The highest numbers of snails were collected in September, May and November. Of the 5486 molluscs examined, 11.41% harboured F. hepatica (Trematoda; Digenea) with an average intensity of 20.14. In general, the values of both infection prevalence and intensity increased with the size of the snails. It was in October when the highest figures for each parameter mentioned above were detected (18.73% and 28.48, respectively). The chi-square test showed statistically significant differences in relation to the infection prevalence among the groups of molluscs established according to: their length; the months in which they were collected; the sampling localities; monthly average ambient temperature; precipitation during the collection. Similarly, statistically significant differences were detected in the intensity of the infection among the groups of molluscs previously established, except for that based on the values of precipitation. Generally, parasites were found in the same snail at different stages of development. It seems that most mollusc infections occur in February-March and at the end of summer-beginning of autumn periods. The highest rate of rediae with mature cercariae ready to be shed were detected between September and December. Metacercariae in the grass samples were also observed at the end of autumn. For this reason, this period could be considered as the most suitable for infection of the definitive hosts to take place.
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