Taxonomic approaches to and interpretation of host specificity of trematodes of fishes: Lessons from the Great Barrier Reef

Miller, T. L., Bray, R. A. and Cribb, T. H. (2011) Taxonomic approaches to and interpretation of host specificity of trematodes of fishes: Lessons from the Great Barrier Reef. Parasitology, 138 13: 1710-1722. doi:10.1017/S0031182011000576


Author Miller, T. L.
Bray, R. A.
Cribb, T. H.
Title Taxonomic approaches to and interpretation of host specificity of trematodes of fishes: Lessons from the Great Barrier Reef
Journal name Parasitology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0031-1820
1469-8161
Publication date 2011-11-01
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1017/S0031182011000576
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 138
Issue 13
Start page 1710
End page 1722
Total pages 13
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Language eng
Abstract The taxonomy of trematodes of Great Barrier Reef (GBR) fishes has been studied in some detail for over 20 years. Understanding of the fauna has been informed iteratively by approaches to sampling, understanding of morphology, the advent of molecular methodology and a feed-back loop from the emergent understanding of host specificity. Here we analyse 658 host-parasite combinations for 290 trematode species, 152 genera and 28 families from GBR fishes. These are reported from 8 orders, 38 families, 117 genera and 243 species of fishes. Of the 290 species, only 4 (1.4%) have been reported from more than one order of fishes and just 23 (7.9%) infect more than one family; 77.9% of species are known from only one genus, and 60% from only one species of fish. Molecular studies have revealed several complexes of cryptic species and others are suspected; we conclude that no euryxenous host distribution should be accepted on the basis of morphology only. The occurrence of individual trematode species in potential hosts is patchy and difficult to predict reliably a priori or explain convincingly a posteriori. These observations point to the need for a vigorous iterative interaction between the accretion of host specificity data and its interpretation.
Formatted abstract
The taxonomy of trematodes of Great Barrier Reef (GBR) fishes has been studied in some detail for over 20 years. Understanding of the fauna has been informed iteratively by approaches to sampling, understanding of morphology, the advent of molecular methodology and a feed-back loop from the emergent understanding of host specificity. Here we analyse 658 host-parasite combinations for 290 trematode species, 152 genera and 28 families from GBR fishes. These are reported from 8 orders, 38 families, 117 genera and 243 species of fishes. Of the 290 species, only 4 (1·4%) have been reported from more than one order of fishes and just 23 (7·9%) infect more than one family; 77·9% of species are known from only one genus, and 60% from only one species of fish. Molecular studies have revealed several complexes of cryptic species and others are suspected; we conclude that no euryxenous host distribution should be accepted on the basis of morphology only. The occurrence of individual trematode species in potential hosts is patchy and difficult to predict reliably a priori or explain convincingly a posteriori. These observations point to the need for a vigorous iterative interaction between the accretion of host specificity data and its interpretation.
Keyword Digenea
Fishes
Great Barrier Reef
Host specificity
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID A00104962
209/29
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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