Prevalence of gastrointestinal helminth infections in ovine population of Kashmir Valley.Vet World. 2015 Oct; 8(10):1199-204.VW
Gastrointestinal (GI) helminth parasitism is one of the major constraints for profitable sheep production. Due to variations in the prevalence of GI helminths from region to region, it becomes important to map out accurately the parasitic fauna of a particular region for development of suitable control measures.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
An extensive study of GI helminths was carried out in Budgam district of Kashmir Valley over a period of 1 year. A total of 1200 fresh ovine faecal samples from both sexes of young ones and adults were collected in sterilized plastic bags and examined by standard sedimentation and floatation techniques. Positive faecal samples (15-20%) in each season were examined by Stoll's dilution method to determine the parasitic load. A total of 120 faecal samples (30 samples in each season) positive for strongyle eggs were subjected to coproculture using Petridish method and the third stage larvae were harvested to find out prevalence of different genera of strongyle worms.
The overall prevalence of GI helminths was found to be 77% with platyhelminths and nemathelminthes in 26.58 and 60.92% animals, respectively. The overall prevalence of mixed GI helminths was found to be 8.67%. Eggs of various helminths encountered in the present study were those of Fasciola spp. (3.58%), Dicrocoelium spp. (11.58%), paramphistomes (4.83%), Moniezia spp. (7.92%), strongyle worms including Nematodirus spp. (57.75%), Strongyloides spp. (1.67%), and Trichuris spp. (1.5%). On coprocultural examination Haemonchus spp. (55%) was found to be most predominant strongyle worm followed by Trichostrongylus spp. (17.5%), Ostertagia spp. (11.67%), Oesophagostomum spp. (9.17%), and Chabertia spp. (6.67%). On seasonal basis, highest prevalence of GI helminths was recorded in summer (83.00%) followed by spring (78.67%), winter (76.33%), and autumn (70.00%), the difference being statistically non-significant (p>0.05). The prevalence of platyhelminths (Fasciola spp., Dicrocoelium spp. and Moniezia spp.) was found to be non-significantly higher in winter, but paramphistomes showed the highest prevalence in the summer season. Nemathelminth infection was found highest in summer season and lowest during the winter season. Eggs per gram (EPG) ranged from 0 to 1800, and an average EPG count was found to be 454.35±27.85. EPG was found to be highest in summer (684.00±69.83) and lowest in winter (202.38±18.82). The overall prevalence of GI helminths was found more in adult sheep (83.00%) compared to young ones (53.11%), the difference being statistically significant (p<0.05). Similarly, the prevalence of helminths was found to be higher in females (78.32%) as compared to males (72.97%), the variation being statistically non-significant (p>0.05).
Seasonal variation plays an important role in the prevalence of GI helminths in addition to age and sex of the animal.