Dictionary > Ectoparasitism

Ectoparasitism

Definition
noun
A form of parasitism wherein the parasite lives outside the body of the host (as opposed to a parasite living inside the host)
Supplement
Parasitism is one of the many forms of symbiosis. In parasitism, one organism (called parasite) benefits at the expense of another organism usually of different species (called host). The parasite benefits at the expense of the host organism. Depending on the type of parasite involved, the parasitism may be an ectoparasitism or an endoparasitism. Ectoparasitism is a form of parasitism where the parasite lives outside the body of the host. The parasite is referred to in particular as an ectoparasite.

In ectoparasitism, the host-parasite relationship is non-mutual. Many of the endoparasitic relationships do not lead to much harm to the host compared with that in endoparasitism. Nevertheless, there are ectoparasites that serve as carriers of disease. For instance, the mosquito, Aedes aegypti, may carry dengue virus, which can cause dengue.

The mosquito is an example of an ectoparasite since it benefits from its host, e.g. human, by feeding on the blood of the latter. Other examples of ectoparasitism are ticks, lice, and leech that feed externally from the skin of their host.
Synonym(s):

  • infestation

See also:


You will also like...

Transpiration
Water in Plants

The movement of molecules (specifically, water and solutes) is vital to the understanding of plant processes. This tuto..

Golgi apparatus (3-D illustration)
Role of Golgi Apparatus & Endoplasmic Reticulum in Protein Synthesis

The endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus are the organelles involved in the translation step of protein synthesis a..

Fossil trilobite imprint in the sediment
Insects

There are more species of insects than any other species combined. This surely illustrates that insects have the selecti..

Psychiatry and mental disorders
Psychiatry & Mental Disorders

Different mental disorders are described here. Read this tutorial to get an overview of schizophrenia, affective mood di..

Origins of Life on Earth
Origins of Life on Earth

Earth was created around 4.5 billion years ago and life began not long after. Primitive life likely possessed the elemen..

An artist depiction of a Precambrian multicellular life form.
The Evolution of Cell Organelles

The nucleus containing the genetic material, DNA, and the mitochondria, well-identified as the "powerhouse of the cell",..

Related Articles...

No related articles found

See all Related Topics