Title

Mermithid Nematode Infection in a Colony of Blue-Winged Grasshoppers (Tropidacris Collaris)

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2009

Publication Title

Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine

Volume Number

39

Issue Number

3

DOI

10.1638/2007-0179.1

Abstract

A die-off occurred in a captive colony of blue-winged grasshoppers (Tropidacris collaris) at the Toronto Zoo. One fourth of the colony died within a year due to infection with worms initially mistaken for nematomorphs but later identified as nematodes belonging to the Mermithidae, genus Mermis. Mortality persisted and the grasshopper population dwindled over the following years. Mermithid larvae developed in the hemocoel of the insects until they eventually emerged from a hollowed-out exoskeleton. Circumstantial evidence suggests that the parasites were introduced with raspberry browse that was grown on site and contaminated with mermithid eggs.

ISSN

1042-7260

First Page

488

Last Page

492

Link Out URL

https://doi.org/10.1638/2007-0179.1

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