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Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research

On-line version ISSN 2219-0635
Print version ISSN 0030-2465

Onderstepoort j. vet. res. vol.75 n.3 Pretoria  2008




The helminth community of Helmeted Guineafowls, Numida meleagris (Linnaeus, 1758), in the north of Limpopo Province, South Africa



K. JunkerI; L. DebushoII; J. BoomkerI

IDepartment of Veterinary Tropical Diseases, University of Pretoria, Private Bag X04, Onderstepoort, 0110 South Africa
IIDepartment of Statistics, University of Pretoria, Private Bag, South Africa




The helminths of 15 Helmeted Guineafowls were collected in the north of Limpopo Province, South Africa. A total of 11 cestode, ten nematode and a single acanthocephalan species were present. Species richness ranged from 8 to 16 species per host, and nine core and nine secondary species accounted for 40.9 % of the component parasite community. The remaining 18.2 % comprised satellite species. Core species represented 91 % of all the worms present. Individual intensities ranged from 66 to 2 724 per host and overdispersion was pronounced. There were no significant differences regarding the abundance and species richness between male and female hosts. The number of component species and overall abundance did not differ significantly between juvenile and adult hosts, but Cyrnea parroti was significantly more abundant, and the prevalence of Hadjelia truncata was higher in young birds than in adults. In contrast, Gongylonema congolense and Porogynia paronai were absent in juveniles, but had a prevalence of 60 % and 70 %, respectively, in adults. Pairwise Spearman's rank correlation yielded one positive and 10 negative significant species correlations. A single trematode, Dicrocoelium macrostomum, was collected from five of nine guineafowls, but was not included in the helminth community study.

Keywords: Acanthocephala, Cestoda, Helmeted Guineafowls, Nematoda, Numida meleagris



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Accepted for publication 28 May 2008-Editor



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