Gilruth, Sweet and Dodd, 1910
The parasite was first described by Gilruth, Sweet and Dodd in 1910.
P. relcitum is geographically widespread, and is the most widespread malaria parasite of birds.
P. relictum infects a wide variety of birds including birds from various orders. Infections in numerous wild birds and experimental animals have been described including partridges, canaries, chickens, ducks, and pigeons. Experimental attempts to infect owls were not successful, suggesting owls may not be susceptible to P. relictum.
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