It was determined that there is a relationship between prevalence and mean densities of Trichodina spp. on Merlangius merlangus and organic pollution, measured as levels of nitrite, nitrate and phosphate in the surrounding environment. Monthly, two left anterior gill arcs of 60 M. merlangus (unless otherwise stated) captured with hook and line were fixed in 10% formalin. The number of Trichodina spp. was determined by counting all of the cells with a grid slide. The two right anterior gill arcs were used to prepare dry smears to picture the morphology of the trichodinids and to determine species composition. High levels of prevalence and densities of the protozoan were observed during the late fall, winter and early spring months. Then, prevalence decreased to lower levels but never below 60%, an indication of the important role of M. merlangus for Trichodina spp. in the studied region. A multivariate analysis revealed that the magnitude of prevalence was related to the level of all three parameters: nitrite, nitrate and phosphate (r(2) =0.59). However, a much stronger relationship between prevalence and nitrate, phosphate, oxygen and temperature (r(2)=0.89) was detected. Consequently, the seasonal parasite prevalence and density were affected by organic pollution. The timing for a high prevalence and mean densities of this parasite also suggests that primary production may be responsible for the observed seasonal variation in prevalence and mean densities. By using the model describing the relationship between the water quality parameters and the prevalence data of Trichodina spp. recalculated values and observed field data corresponded closely.