Occurrence of suctorian ciliates (Ciliophora, Suctoria) in a polluted creek in Southern Brazil
The Subclass Suctoria encompasses ciliates without cilia during the trophont stage, and that mainly feed on other ciliates, rotifers and microcrustaceans. Suctorians are widely distributed in various habitats and can also be found as epibionts in aquatic invertebrates. Although these organisms are widely distributed, they are poorly studied, mainly in the Southern Hemisphere. In the present study we investigated the occurrence of suctorians ciliates in a polluted creek in Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Using taxonomic keys it was possible to identify one species in the genus Multifasciculatum, one in the genus Tokophryaand two species belonging to the genus Podophrya . All of them are aloricate and freshwater suctorians. These organisms differ in zooid shape, and the distribution of their tentacles in the cell, morphological characteristics of each genus. This study presents the first record of Podophrya fallax , Podophrya sandi , Tokophrya lemnarum, and Multifasciculatum elegansfor the state of Rio Grande do Sul.