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Keywords:

  • anaemia;
  • Ceratothoa oestroides;
  • Dicentrarchus labrax;
  • feeding;
  • isopoda

Abstract

The effects of the fish parasitic isopod, Ceratothoa oestroides (Risso), on haematological parameters of its cage-cultured sea bass host, Dicentrarchus labrax (L.), were studied. Analyses of blood parameters (cell counts, haemoglobin content and haematocrit) were carried out on parasitized and unparasitized sea bass from a fish farm in Turkey. Parasitized fish had significantly lowered erythrocyte counts, haematocrit and haemoglobin values and significantly increased leucocyte counts. Blood feeding by C. oestroides thus produces a post-haemorrhagic anaemia and the fish appear to mount an immune response to the presence of parasites.