Feeding ecology and diet

With the exception of species belonging to the genus Lin-guatula, which browse on cells and mucus lining the nasal sinuses, all tongue worms feed on blood. In most cases the blood is pumped from capillaries lining the respiratory surface of the lung by the sucking action of an oral papilla. In some genera (Alofia, Leiperia, Elenia, Waddycephalus, Kiricephalus, and Cuberia) the head of females is separated from the trunk by a distinct neck, which is permanently encapsulated by inflammatory tissue and thereby anchored to the lung wall. In the lung females may also feed on inflammatory cells, as is known to occur during the development of Porocephalus nymphs in rodent intermediate hosts.

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