No common name

Moniezia benedeni

ORDER Cyclophyllidea

FAMILY

Anoplocephalidae TAXONOMY

Taenia benedeni Moniez, 1879, France.

OTHER COMMON NAMES None known.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Body 8.2-13 ft (2.5-4 m) long and 0.99-1.0 in (25-26 mm) wide. Scolex with four suckers, without rostellum. Proglottides

I Tatria biremis I Davainea proglottina transversely elongate. Each proglottid has two sets of reproductive organs, including two genital pores situated on both lateral margins.

DISTRIBUTION Cosmopolitan.

HABITAT

Microhabitats of adult worms are intestines of domestic (cattle, sheep, goats) and some wild ruminants (moose, antelopes, deer, etc.). Larvae develop in oribatid mites. Macrohabitats include grasslands, forests, and pastures.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Internal parasite absorbing nutrients through the tegument.

BEHAVIOR Nothing is known.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

This species is hermaphroditic. Oribatid mites are infected by eating eggs of the parasite. Depending on the temperature, larvae (cysticercoids) develop in them for four to seven months. Ruminants eat infected mites while grazing on grass. Worms become mature after about 50 days.

CONSERVATION STATUS Not listed by the IUCN.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

This and another parasite of the same genus, M. expansa, are agents of a disease (monieziasis) of sheep, goats, and cattle. It is more dangerous for young animals than for adults. Histological changes of the intestinal walls and intoxication of the infected animals have been described. ♦

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