2009 Volume 4 Issue 1 Pages 1-13
Since marine medusae and ctenophores harbor a wide variety of symbionts, from protists to fish, they constitute a unique community in pelagic ecosystems. Their symbiotic relationships broadly range from simple, facultative phoresy through parasitisim to complex mutualism, although it is sometimes difficult to define these associations strictly. Phoresy and/or commensalism are found in symbionts such as pycnogonids, decapod larvae and fish juveniles. Parasitism and/or parasitoidism are common in the following symbionts: dinoflagellates, ciliates, anthozoan larvae, pedunculate barnacles, anuropid isopods, and hyperiid amphipods. Mutualism is established between ctenophores and gymnamoebae, and between rhizostome medusae and endosymbiotic dinoflagellates. More information on symbiotic apostome ciliates, anthozoan larvae and hyperiid amphipods is definitely needed for further studies in consideration of their high prevalence and serious damage they can inflict on their hosts. The present paper briefly reviews previously published data on symbionts on these gelatinous predators and introduces new information in the form of our unpublished data.