The effect of Sanguinicola inermis on serum antibody and complement activity in Cyprinus carpio was assessed using an ELISA and haemolytic assays. Possible immune evasion strategies were assessed using immunodetection of host proteins on the surface of the parasite. Carp acclimatized to 20 or 25 °C were infected by exposure to 500 cercariae or injected intraperitoneally with 150 cercariae, and serum monitored over a 63-day period. In cercariae-injected carp, irrespective of time and temperature, a significant increase occurred in complement activity being greatest at 25 °C. In addition, fish exposed to the cercariae of S. inermis and maintained at 20 °C the level of complement activity was significantly higher after 5 weeks compared to controls. At 20 °C intraperitoneal injections of parasites increased serum antibody levels which peaked after 7 days. In contrast, at 25 °C, antibody levels were maintained over 63 days. Exposure of fish to infection did not appear to stimulate antibody production. Immunofluorescence studies revealed ‘host-like’ molecules on the surface of the cercarial body exposed to carp serum and adult flukes obtained directly from the fish or cultured for 24 h in L15 medium. The possible role of ‘host-like’ molecules in immune evasion is discussed and the response at different temperatures is related to infection dynamics.