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Botulus microporus, a giant digenean parasite from the intestine of a lancetfish
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Platyhelminthes
Class: Trematoda
Rudolphi, 1808


The Trematodes are a class of flatworms in the phylum Platyhelminthes. They are called flukes, and are internal parasites of molluscs and vertebrates. Most trematodes have a complex life cycle with at least two hosts. The primary host, where the flukes sexually reproduce, is a vertebrate. The intermediate host, which is the agent of dispersal, is usually a snail.

The trematodes or flukes are estimated to include 18,000[1] to 24,000[2] species


  1. Littlewood D.T.J. & Bray R.A. 2000. The Digenea, in Interrelationships of the Platyhelminthes. Systematics Association Special Volume #60, pp168–185. ISBN 978-0-7484-0903-7
  2. Poulin, Robert & Morand, Serge 2005. Parasite biodiversity. Smithsonian. pp. 216. ISBN 978-1-58834-170-9 .