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Argulus japonicus
Image courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey
Argulus japonicus
Taxonomic Group: Crustaceans-Copepods


Argulus japonicus is a fish lice species that was described from Japan in 1900, as a parasite of Goldfish (Carassius auratus). Since then, it has been reported from a number of locations around the globe, including: Britain, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Israel, New Zealand and North America. Its definitive native range is unknown and it was likely widely dispersed prior to being described. It is primarily restricted to freshwaters, but was reported from tidal waters in Chesapeake Bay, Virginia in 1933. Fish-lice are ectoparasites, which after a non-feeding nauplius stage, attach temporarily to a host and feed on its blood and mucus.

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Fofonoff PW, Ruiz GM, Steves B, Simkanin C, & Carlton JT (2018)
National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System.
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Marine Invasions Lab
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

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