The metazoan parasites of three species of scoters (Melanitta perspicillata (Linnaeus, 1758), M. nigra (Linnaeus, 1758) and M. fusca (Linnaeus, 1758))

Bourgeois, Charles Edward (1980) The metazoan parasites of three species of scoters (Melanitta perspicillata (Linnaeus, 1758), M. nigra (Linnaeus, 1758) and M. fusca (Linnaeus, 1758)). Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

One hundred and seventy-five (94 surf, 36 white-winged and 45 black) scoters from four localities (British Columbia, New Brunswick, Labrador and Norway) were examined for metazoan parasites, with 91% (159 birds: 86 surf, 33 white-winged and 40 black scoters) being infected. Approximately 55 species of parasites were found (43 from the surf, 29 from the white-winged and 34 from the black), including 45 which were new host records. There were 4 new North American records, 4 new Canadian records and 1 new European record. A checklist of parasites harboured by these birds is presented. -- The number and percent of birds infected, range of numbers and mean number of parasites per infected bird are given. Also for each host species the number and percent of each sex and age class infected by individual parasites is given. Parasite species are discussed indiviudally with regard to topics such as location within host, new host records and minor variations from their original description. -- The ecology of the parasites is discussed; the preferred habitat, their geographical distribution and their preference for marine or freshwater, environments are presented. A short discussion of host specificity is included and the parasites of each host are categorized. Six parasites were found to occur across the geographic area sampled, with 23 helminths cycling through the marine environment and 19 through the freshwater environment. Throughout the work the parasite burdens of each host species are contrasted. In addition the number and percent of species occurring in each geographic locale is compared and contrasted. Cluster analysis revealed that neither individual birds of a species nor species of birds could be distinguished using parasite fauna and geographical locality as criteria. -- One species of parasite, Polymorphus botulus, was noted to cause damage to its host but was not considered to be lethal.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/4197
Item ID: 4197
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 79-90.
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Biology
Date: 1980
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Black scoter; Ducks; Birds--Parasites

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