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Structure and seasonal dynamics of an ectoparasite community on the common shrew (Sorex araneus) in the Il'men'-Volkhov lowland



Structure and seasonal dynamics of an ectoparasite community on the common shrew (Sorex araneus) in the Il'men'-Volkhov lowland



Parazitologiia 37(6): 441-454



Species composition, seasonal dynamics, and a load of ectoparasites per individual and population of the common shrew Sorex araneus have been examined in coniferous and mixed forests of the Ilmen'-Volkhov lowland (a neighbourhood of Oskuy village, Chudovo district, Novgorod Province) during the period 1999-2003. Trapping of mammals was carried monthly, with exception of few accidental gaps. The Gero traps were used for catching micromammalian hosts. The lines of trap were checked 2 times a day, places of lines changed each 3-5 day. Total number of micromammalians collected during the period of study is 3215, including 1115 specimens of the common shrew S. araneus and 246 ones of the pigmy shrew S. minutus. Parasite fauna on the common shrew included 23 ectoparasite species: fleas--12, ixodid ticks--2, gamasid mites--7, and myobiid mites--2 species. Among recorded species, 9 fleas species and some gamasid species are accidental parasites. These accidental ectoparasite species are common to the bank vole Clethrionomys glareolus in the territory investigated. Species composition, occurrence and abundance indices of parasites changed during the year. In total, about 55% shrew specimens are infected with ectoparasites. The infracommunity of ectoparasites on the common shrew usually consists of 6 species or less. Mean number of all ectoparasite individuals per one host specimens varies from 4 to 83. The greatest number of parasites (50 and 83) was recorded on the shrews, which carried 5 and 4 parasites species, respectively. Biodiversity of parasite species in the ectoparasite community on the common shrew and the load of parasites per one host specimen are lower than those in the bank vole. In forest biotopes explored, the most part of temporary ectoparasite species found on the common shrew was also recorded on other small mammals, which could have contacts with this host. It is possible to conclude that among the parasite supracommunity in the explored ecosystem, the temporary ectoparasites represent a "fond" of temporary parasites, which are common for most small mammal species. A role of different shrew and rodent species as main of additional hosts changes depending on a population density of potential mammalian hosts and other environment factors.

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Accession: 050398671

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