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Occurrence of three leech species (Annelida: Hirudinida) on fishes in the Kentucky River
FLOTEMERSCH, J. E., D. KLEMM, AND W. E. Moser. Occurrence of three leech species (Annelida: Hirudinida) on fishes in the Kentucky River. THE JOURNAL OF THE KENTUCKY ACADEMY OF SCIENCE. Kentucky Academy of Science, Lexington, KY, 73(2):77-82, (2012).
Recent phylogenetic analyses hav e greatly enhanced our knowledge of the evolutionary relatinship of leeches, however, there is still limited distributin and life history data available. The Commonwealth of Kentucky is particularly understudied. Published accounts ahve documented the parasitism of a few leech species in a limited geographic area. As part of a study assessing the impact of sampling design on electrofishing results by one of the authors, collected fish were examined for attached leeches.
Leeches were collected from six fish species distributed among four of ten sites sampled. The leech species observed were Myzobdella reducta (Meyer, 1940) and Myzobdella lugubris Leidy, 1851 of the family Piscicolidae and Placobdella pediculata Hemingway, 1908 of the family Glossiphoniidae. Attachment locations for Myzobdella lugubris included various sites in the buccal cavity of green sunfish [Lepomis cyanellus (Rafinesque)], largemouth bass [Micropterus salmoides (Lacepede)], and spotted bass [Micropterus punctulatus (Rafinesque)] and posterior to the eye of the largemouth bass. Attachment locations for Myzobdella reducta included on the caudal and pelvic fins of logperch [Percina caprodes (Rafinesque)] and the caudal and anal fin of spotfin shiners [Cyprinella spiloptera (Cope)] - a new host record. Attachment location observed for Placobdella pediculata was on the inside of the operculum of a freshwater drum [Aplodinotus grunniens (Rafinesque)]. This study established new host and attachment locations, the diverse presence of Muyzobdella reducta on various fish species, and substantiated the high degree of host specificity of Placobdella pediculata for the freshwater drum.