To evaluate the gastro-intestinal parasite fauna of the wild Polish primitive horses (Equus caballus gmelini Ant., forma silvatica Vet.), 11 yearlings captured in the Reserve according to the control rules of population dynamics were diagnostically dewormed with abamectin+praziquantel. Expelled parasites were collected from the faeces 24, 36 and 48 hours after treatment. Among a total of 4456 specimens (a mean 405.1 per horse) 27 nematode species, one cestode and one species of botfly larvae were recovered. Strongylids were 100 % prevalent and represented by 24 species (2 large strongylid and 22 cyathostome species). Five cyathostome species (Cylicodontophorus bicoronatus, C. insigne, Poteriostomum imparidentatum, Parapoteriostomum mettami and Gyalocephalus capitatus) were recorded for the first time in Polish primitive horses, whereas two species (Cyathostomum montgomeryi and Cylicostephanus bidentatus) were found for the first time in the horse in Poland. Oxyuris equi was found in 100 % and Parascaris equorum in 63.6 % of yearlings surveyed. Tapeworms (Anoplocephala perfoliata) were revealed in 72.7 %, while Gasterophilus intestinalis instars in 90.9 % of horses. At least three parasite species were highly prevalent (i.e. S. vulgaris, A. perfoliata and G. intestinalis), which might be a reason of serious abdominal disorders in Polish horses living freely in the reserve.
Thirty-one Polish primitive horses (Equus caballus) from three herds (two from the reserve and onefrom the stable) were dewormed with ivermectin+praziquantel and examined for the gastrointestinalparasite fauna. A total of 21.231 parasites were collected from the faeces at 24, 36 and 48 hoursposttreatment. There were 35 nematode species, one cestode and one botfl y larva. Strongyloideswesteri infection was confirmed pretreatment by faecal sample examination and no threadwormspecimens were found after deworming. Large and small strongyle prevalence was 90 % – 100 % and represented by 31 species. Among a total of 25 cyathostome species recovered (from 19 to 24in each group), five species (C. catinatum, C. minutus, C. longibursatus, C. nassatus and C. ashworthi)had a prevalence of 100 % in three groups of horses. Meanwhile 14 species were 100 % prevalent in one herd. A total of six large strongyle species were found in adult horses. Oxyuris equiwas recorded in 60 – 100 % of the horses while Parascaris equorum was detected in 100 % of foalsand 16.7 % – 30 % of adult mares. Habronema muscae was found in 30 % of the horses from onefree-ranging herd. Tapeworms (Anoplocephala perfoliata) were found in 90 % of the horses from onefree-ranging group, whereas botfl y larvae (Gasterophilus intestinalis) were found in 50 – 80 % of allsurveyed horses. The present results are compared with earlier studies of Polish primitive wild horsesfrom similar reserves in Poland. A total of 36 gastrointestinal parasite species were recorded fromwild and stabled horses from the Biebrza National Park. This is in comparison with 35 such speciesin free-ranging and stabled horses from the Roztocze National Park and with 28 such species offree-ranginghorses from the Popielno forest reserve.
Among parasites recovered, the highly prevalent S. vulgaris, tapeworms and botfl y larvae pose aserious risk of serious abdominal disorders in horses.
Toxocariasis is a common human zoonosis, which induces a clinically unapparent course of infection. Diagnosis is difficult and relies upon serological testing (searching of specific IgG antibodies by ELISA), laboratory abnormalities and clinical manifestations. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique was adapted for the detection of Toxocara canis larvae in a host tissue. Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus) were used as an animal model for human toxocariasis. 8 animals were inoculated with 1000 T. canis eggs, four uninfected were used as control. At 3, 5, 7, and 14 days post-infection, 2 infected and 1 control gerbil were killed and their livers were used for molecular analysis. Specific primer in the PCR reaction allowed identification of T. canis larvae, with the parasite gDNA found in the liver of all infected gerbils. The results indicate that the PCR method has a potential as a supporting technique for the diagnosis of human toxocariasis.
The prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in 214 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in the southern part of Poland (Małopolskie voivodship) was evaluated post mortem in 2005. Infected foxes were found in 8 districts within 17 examined, with the prevalence from 10.0 % to 63.9 % (a mean 20.1 % in the whole study area). The highest prevalence (41.2 % and 63.9 %) was revealed in two districts, in the south and the east of the province, respectively. The high prevalence of E. multilocularis in red foxes in the region previously recognised as that of low parasite endemicity provides evidence for the need of regular screening of the current epidemiological situation in foxes as well as the monitoring of humans from risk groups for early recognition of possible AE cases.
The study was performed to investigate the gastrointestinal parasite fauna using the method of diagnostic deworming in own modification in 29 Polish primitive horses (Equus caballus) from the Roztocze National Park, south-east of Poland. The parasite community was comprised of 35 species represented by three nematode families (Strongylidae, Ascaridae, Habronematidae), one cestode family (Anoplocephalidae) and larvae of insects from the family Gasterophilidae (Diptera). Strongylidae being 100 % prevalent was represented by 31 species from the subfamily Strongylinae (6 species) and Cyathostominae (25 species). Parascaris equorum was recorded in 48.3 %, Habronema muscae in 55.2 %, tapeworms (Anoplocephala perfoliata) in 24.1 % and Gasterophilus intestinalis larvae in 41.4 % of horses surveyed. The present results showed high prevalence of pathogenic intestinal parasites, which create the risk of health problems for horses living free in the reserve as well as stabled horses, when rarely treated.
An extensive analysis of the relationship between age, sex, and different types of management strategies relative to the gastrointestinal parasite community of Polish primitive horses was performed on 124 horses maintained in nine farms from four regions of Poland. The horses (96 females and 28 males) were housed in three types of management strategies: stabled (ST), free-ranging (FR) and semi-free (SF). These horses also were divided into three age groups: <3 years, 3 – 10 years and >10 years old. The gastrointestinal parasites were collected following deworming of all horses with anthelmintics containing the macrocyclic lactones and praziquantel. Totally, 66,192 parasite specimens were collected and identified. The analysis of dependence of horse infection with intestinal nematodes using sex, age and management strategies demonstrated that females had significantly heavier infections of strongylids. Young horses (<3 years old) had higher infections of Parascaris equorum and Strongyloides westeri. Free ranging horses were more infected with strongylids, Oxyuris equi and Gasterophilus intestinalis. Thirty-five nematode species, one cestode and one species of the botfly larvae of Gasterophilus were found. Diagnostic deworming examination revealed presence of Parascaris equorum in 27.4 %, Oxyuris equi in 38.7 %, Habronema muscae in 16.9 %, Anoplocephala perfoliata in 42.7 % and Gasterophilus intestinalis in 46.8% in the Polish primitive horses examined. Strongyloides westeri presence was confirmed only by fecal samples examination; threadworms were not observed in these horses after deworming. In the strongylid community, 31 species (6 of subfamily Strongylinae and 25 of Cyathostominae) were found. Significant differences in prevalence of separate strongylid species, or their proportions in the communities were not observed between females and males, or between age groups (p > 0.05). The highest species diversity (n=30 or 31) was observed in the FR horses, the lowest (n=15) – in ST horses. The FR horses had higher prevalence and proportion of large strongyles in the community, in comparison to SF or ST horses (p < 0.05).