Title

Feeding Behavior of Myzobdella lugubris Leech and Its Effect on the Oral Epithelial Layer of Largemouth Bass

Description/Abstract

Largemouth bass currently make up a major recreational sport-fishery in Back Bay Wildlife Refuge, located in southeastern Virginia. Between 1962 and 1987, storm disturbances of barrier islands caused an introduction of salt water into the freshwater system. This increase in salinity within the system caused a decline in freshwater fish. In 2009, supplemental stocking of largemouth bass was conducted within Back Bay with hopes of increasing the bass population (Pomposini et al. 2019). Since 2009, the bass population has increased, however larger bass are not as abundant as previously expected (Pomposini et al. 2019). Beginning in 2006, observations were made of Myzobdella lugubrisleech infestations in the oral cavity of largemouth bass in Back Bay. Attachment sites of M. lugubris can leave ulcers in the oral cavity of bass that become infected with bacteria (Faisal, Schulz, Eissa, & Whelan, 2011; Noga et al. 1990). While some biological information on M. lugubrisis described in the literature, duration of attachment, feeding, and detachment of M. lugubrison any host is undetermined. The study addressed these questions of M. lugubris biology as well as its parasitism of largemouth bass, leech development, and temporal progression/regression of pathology in the host oral cavity. In conjunction with the studies described above, we performed a tag-recapture study to address questions of M. lugubris natural history. Here we report on the findings of that study and provide clarity on the leech feeding cycle and its effects on the epithelial layer within the oral cavity of largemouth bass.

Presenting Author Name/s

Ciara Branco

Faculty Advisor

David Gauthier

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Disciplines

Animal Studies | Biology | Marine Biology

Session Title

College of Sciences 1

Location

Learning Commons @ Perry Library Conference Room 1310

Start Date

2-8-2020 9:00 AM

End Date

2-8-2020 10:00 AM

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Feb 8th, 9:00 AM Feb 8th, 10:00 AM

Feeding Behavior of Myzobdella lugubris Leech and Its Effect on the Oral Epithelial Layer of Largemouth Bass

Learning Commons @ Perry Library Conference Room 1310

Largemouth bass currently make up a major recreational sport-fishery in Back Bay Wildlife Refuge, located in southeastern Virginia. Between 1962 and 1987, storm disturbances of barrier islands caused an introduction of salt water into the freshwater system. This increase in salinity within the system caused a decline in freshwater fish. In 2009, supplemental stocking of largemouth bass was conducted within Back Bay with hopes of increasing the bass population (Pomposini et al. 2019). Since 2009, the bass population has increased, however larger bass are not as abundant as previously expected (Pomposini et al. 2019). Beginning in 2006, observations were made of Myzobdella lugubrisleech infestations in the oral cavity of largemouth bass in Back Bay. Attachment sites of M. lugubris can leave ulcers in the oral cavity of bass that become infected with bacteria (Faisal, Schulz, Eissa, & Whelan, 2011; Noga et al. 1990). While some biological information on M. lugubrisis described in the literature, duration of attachment, feeding, and detachment of M. lugubrison any host is undetermined. The study addressed these questions of M. lugubris biology as well as its parasitism of largemouth bass, leech development, and temporal progression/regression of pathology in the host oral cavity. In conjunction with the studies described above, we performed a tag-recapture study to address questions of M. lugubris natural history. Here we report on the findings of that study and provide clarity on the leech feeding cycle and its effects on the epithelial layer within the oral cavity of largemouth bass.