Naragh Suburb, Center of Iran; A Natural Habitat of Hirudo medicinalis

Document Type : Brief Report


1 Environment Health Department, Health Faculty” and “Social Determinants of Health Research Center”, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran

2 Environmental Health Engineering Department, Health Faculty, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran

3 English Department, Medicine Faculty, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran


Aims A very common species of leeches has been named as Hirudo medicinalis. Regarding
to the application of leeches in medicine and their fast extinction, this study was performed
in aquatic habitats of Kashan aimed to determine the distribution of leeches and to provide
information about their regional and habitat characteristics.
Materials & Methods This descriptive study was conducted during 2008 to 2010 in three
periods and 90 samples from 30 sites were collected, totally. 30 lentic and lotic aquatic
habitats located in different regions of Naragh were recognized and selected. Leeches
were collected initially in 10% ethanol followed by washing and removing mucus and then
maintained in 70% ethanol. The identification keys were used for recognizing the species of
Findings According to the identification key of the leech species, 15 samples from the total
samples of 30 locations were Hirudo medicinalis. Total Hirudo medicinalis samples were
collected just from Naragh River. These species of leeches were relatively large with 7-10cm
and their colors were olive green, brown and greenish brown with a red stripe on the sides.
Conclusion Naragh River is one of the habitats of Hirudo medicinalis.