Review of parasites of marine zooplankton
Symbiotic relationships of marine zooplankton, ranging from protozoans to ichtyoplankton, are briefly reviewed. Marine symbionts range from loose associates through parasites s.s. to parasitoids. Symbionts include protozoans, diatoms, fungi, and a wide variety of metazoans such as trematodes, cestodes, nematodes, acanthocephalans, polychaetes, and crustaceans. Host zooplankton infected by parasites s.s. can be classified into three categories: intermediate host, final host and paratenic (transport) host. Parasitism often causes morphological, physiological and behavioral changes of host organisms. Recent studies have revealed that some ecto- and endo-parasitic dinoflagellates, ciliates and fungi, which have never been studied in detail in Japan, greatly influence the population dynamics of host zooplankton such as tintinnids, cladocerans, and copepods. However, most of symbiotic relationships are poorly understood, because of difficulties in culturing the hosts and of complexities of the parasites' life cycles. Recently found parasites on zooplankton, such as tantulocaridans, typholoscolecid polychaetes and pycnogonids are also introduced.
Copyright (c) 2000 The Plankton Society of Japan