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Fish trypanosomes from the Okavango Delta, Botswana

by Nico J. Smit, Jo G. Van As, Angela J. Davies
Folia Parasitologica ()

Abstract

During 2001 and 2002, blood smears from 37 of 120 fishes belonging to 10 species captured in the Okavango Delta region of Botswana, were found to harbour trypanosomes. These trypanosomes displayed differing staining properties, were morphometrically variable, and ranged in total length from 29.5 to 80.8 microm. Mixed populations of the smaller and larger trypanosomes were found in most fish examined. Despite variations in size and appearance, these specimens are tentatively identified as Trypanosoma mukasai Hoare, 1932, likely adding another 9 new hosts to those known for this parasite. It is possible that Trypanosoma clariense Pienaar, 1962, described from Clarias gariepinus in South Africa, is also a junior synonym of T. mukasai.

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