|SREL Reprint #0498|
Effluent and the Epizootiology of the Ciliate Epistylis and the
Bacterium Aeromonas in Association with Centrarchid Fish
W. Esch, Terry C. Hazen, Ronald V. Dimock, Jr., and J. Whitfield Gibbons
Esch, G. W., Hazen, T. C., Dimock, R. V., Jr. &
Gibbons, J. W. 1976. Thermal
effluent and the epizootiology of the ciliate Epistylis and the bacterium
Aeromonas in association with centrarchid fish.
Trans. Amer. Micros. Soc., 95: 687-693.
Epistylis sp. (Ciliophora:
Peritricha) is a facultative ectosymbient of fresh-water fishes in
streams and lakes throughout the southeastern U.S.
In combination with the gram-negative bacteria Aeromonas hydrophila,
epizootic outbreaks of Epistylis have been implicated in the death of
many thousands of game fish, primarily striped bass and several species of
Centrarchidae (sunfish), in several reservoirs in North Carolina.
While these epizootics have been correlated with high levels of organic
loading, recent studies suggest that thermal loading from a nuclear production
facility may influence the level of infection by A. hydrophila and
Epistylis sp. (A-E complex) on centrarchid sunfish in Par Pond,
Savannah River Plant, Aiken, S.C. Utilizing
electro-fishing techniques, in excess of 11,500 sunfish, representing six
different species, were collected and examined for external lesions associated
with the A-E complex. Largemouth
bass (Micropterus salmoides) were most heavily infected, followed
in incidence of infection by bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus)
warmouth (Lepomis gulosus) and redbreast sunfish (Lepomis auritus);
lesions were not observed on the surface of black crappie (Pmoxis nigromaculatus).
The body conditions (or K-factor) of more than 2,000 largemouth bass were
calculated; direct correlations were found between thermal loading, body
condition, and incidence of infection. These
data are discussed in terms of thermal effluent and the epizootiology of Epistylis
sp. and Aeromonas hydrophila.
SREL Reprint #0498
Esch, G.W., T.C. Hazen, R.V. Dimock Jr., and J.W. Gibbons. 1976. Thermal effluent and the epizootiology of the ciliate Epistylis and the bacterium Aeromonas in association with centrarchid fish. Transactions of the American Microscopical Society 95:687-693.