Echinorhynchus is a genus of scratch worms that live as adult animals without exception as intestinal parasites in marine and freshwater fish and trigger a Echinorhynchose these.
When the representatives of the genus Echinorhynchus is small to medium sized species of scratch worms that have no spines on the trunk as other kinds of Echinorhynchidae. It is characterized by the more or less cylindrical trunk ( proboscis ) and the corresponding proboscis sheath with a ganglion in the central wall region. In addition, the lacunar of the tegument is connected by numerous anastomoses with them. The trunk is also equipped with numerous hooks that hold simple root extensions and smaller for the trunk base. The males have 6 cement glands.
The eggs of the species are long and spindle- shaped and have typical bulges on the Eipolen.
Way of life
The species of the genus Echinorhynchus live as adult animals as intestinal parasite exclusively in the intestine of fish. These are species that are restricted to freshwater fish and others that occur only in marine fish, or both. As intermediate hosts act small crustaceans such as amphipods or isopods living water.
Within the genus about 80 species can be distinguished. The most prevalent types include the following:
- Echinorhynchus truttae
- Echinorhynchus gadi
- Echinorhynchus salmonis
- Echinorhynchus borealis