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Revista Cubana de Medicina Tropical

Print version ISSN 0375-0760On-line version ISSN 1561-3054


VAZQUEZ PERERA, Antonio Alejandro; SANCHEZ NODA, Jorge  and  HEVIA JIMENEZ, Yosvania. Distribution and preferred habitats of intermediary host molluscs of Fasciola hepatica in Cuba. Rev Cubana Med Trop [online]. 2009, vol.61, n.3, pp.248-253. ISSN 0375-0760.

INTRODUCTION: an ecological study was carried out on the lymnaeids species of Cuba. Both species are capable of serving as intermediary hosts of Fasciola hepatica and occur in most of the wetland ecosystems. OBJECTIVE: to determine distribution and habitat preferences of Fossaria cubensis and Pseudosuccinea columella. METHODS: a total of 370 locations where freshwater snails exist were analysed. Relative species abundance was associated with species diversity and antropic degree for each site. RESULTS: F. cubensis was the best distributed species with populations throughout the island whereas P. columella populations extend from Pinar del Río to Camagüey. The preferred habitats by these species substantially varied, with F. cubensis predominating in transformed habitats (p= 0.024, M-W U test) and P. columella existing in natural and transformed habitats evenly (p= 0.08, M-W U test). The results regarding diversity showed that F. cubensis is more common in sites of low diversity related to higher levels of human activity. Oppositely, P. columella is found in much more diverse ecosystems. CONCLUSIONS: data over the distribution and ecology of these species supports the fact that F. cubensis acts as the main intermediary host of F. hepatica in Cuba (extensive distribution and transformed habitats). Control techniques against these populations were discussed.

Keywords : mollusks; Fossaria cubensis; Pseudosuccinea columella; intermediary hosts; Fasciola hepatica.

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