D. Ebmer, H.-P. Fuehrer, B. Eigner, H. Sattmann and A. Joachim
In the framework of the biodiversity initiative and barcoding project “Austrian Barcode of Life” (ABOL) post mortem examinations of the gastro-intestinal tracts of different species of wild birds were carried out and several adult helminths were retrieved. In the gizzard of two barn owls (Tyto alba) and one common kestrel (Falco tinnuculus) acuariid nematodes belonging to the species Synhimantus (Synhimantus) laticeps (Rudolphi, 1819) were discovered. This report illustrates the identification of this parasitic nematode by morphometric comparison and scanning electron microscopic photographs. Furthermore, genetic identification of individual parasites based on a fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene and the nuclear 18S ribosomal RNA gene was carried out. This report constitutes the first COI-based DNA barcoding of S. (S.) laticeps and its first record in the barn owl (Tyto alba) in Austria.
Taenia taeniaeformis and Taenia crassiceps are cestodes with voles as intermediate hosts and Felidae, Canidae and Mustelidae as definitive hosts. To evaluate the influence of T. taeniaeformis metacestodes on voles in Vorarlberg (Western Austria), a helminthological survey was performed on 318 common voles (Microtus arvalis) and 93 water voles (Arvicola terrestris). Furthermore the metacestodes themselves were analysed by morphometric methods. Our results demonstrate that both T. taeniaeformis and T. crassiceps are endemic in Vorarlberg, and that there is a significant difference between those infected with larvae of T. taeniaeformis and uninfected voles regarding body weight, but not sex or body length.
The trematode Troglotrema acutum and nematodes of the genus Skrjabingylus are parasitic helminths infecting nasal sinuses of mustelids. Despite different infection routes of these parasites, their occurrence becomes evident due to their destructive lesions of the bone structure of the head, which appears almost similar in both cases.
This is a report of coinfection of both the trematode and the nematode, in a polecat from Lower Austria, as well as the first attempt to barcode T. acutum. The nematode could only be found fragmen-tally, therefore accurate morphological determination was not possible. DNA barcoding was successful, however, a clear species assignment was not possible as the similarity with published COI sequences of other nematodes was only 87 % or less. The influence of both parasitic helminths on the health condition of the hosts remains elusive and has to be evaluated in separate studies.