PREVALENCE OF GIT HELMINTHS IN CATTLE AT THE VICINITIES OF TEHSIL JATOI, PUNJAB, PAKISTAN.
ABSTRACT: Main purpose of this study was the investigation of helminth's prevalence in cattle. Therefore, 500 faecal samples of cattle, were examined by direct, indirect (sedimentation and floatation techniques) and coproculture techniques. S p e c i e s r e c o r d e d w e r e Fasciola hepatica, Fasciola gigentica, Toxocara vitulorum, Paramphistomum cervi, Monezia expansa, Monezia bendeni, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Haemonchus placei and Bunostomum phlebotomumn in cattle, an overall prevalence of helminths was 51% (255/500). The highest prevalence (105/500; 21%) was recorded for nematodes followed by trematodes (85/500; 17%), cestodes (10/500; 2%) and mixed helminth infections (55/500; 11%). A total of nine species of helminths including four nematodes, i.e.
Toxocara vitulorum, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei; three trematodes, i.e. Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, Paramphistomum cervi; and two cestodes, i.e. Moniezia expansa, M. benedeni, were recorded. Toxocara vitulorum was the most prevalent species of helminth followed by Fasciola hepatica, Paramphistomum cervi, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei, Moniezia expansa, M. benedeni and F. gigantica. The mixed helminth infection (55/500; 11%) was often composed of 10 species including Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, Toxocara vitulorum, Moniezia expansa, Trichostrongylus spp., Paramphistomum cervi, Haemonchus placei, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum and Cooperia spp. To know the dependence of helminth's prevalence on sex and age of animal Chi-square statistical design was applied to data. All the results were non significant due to some factors which directly affects the helminth's prevalence.
Key words: Cattle, Helminthes, Prevalence, Jatoi, Pakistan
The gastrointestinal tracts (GIT) of animals harbor a variety helminthes, which causes clinical and sub clinical parasitism. Helminthes adversely affect the health status of animals which may be a cause of economic losses to the livestock industry. Helminthes has been noted as major constraint to ruminants' productivity on a clinical and subclinical level . Helminthes are recognized as by for the most significant part of diseases in livestock sector [2;3]. Milk production is considerably declined due to helminthes infestation in cattle and buffalo . The most important predisposing factors of helminthes infection are grazing habits, climates, nutritional deficiency, pasture management, immunological status presence of intermediate host and vector and the number of infective larvae and eggs in the environment .
Due to infestation of helminthes fallowing damages inflicted to the health and productivity includes loss in body weight, poor reproductive prformance, digestive disturbance, and emaciation for longer period . Toxins are produced by mature worms that destroy Red Blood Cells, due to which unthrifty anemic conditions are generated. While immature worms migrating through the body tissues of animals open the way for bacteria and fungi to enter, which cause serious diseases. Other economic losses are involuntary culling, poor work performance, treatment costs, lower milk production and mortality in heavily parasitized animals . So it is important to control internal parasites especially helminthes with better management as in developed countries, and knowledge on prevalence of these parasites is mandatory.
In Pakistan, parasitism is one of the major menaces for livestock, causing obstacles in the development of profitable livestock industry, like in cattle and buffaloes . Keeping in view these considerations, this study was designed to investigate the prevalence of helminthes in cattle of Tehsil Jatoi (District Muzaffar Garh).
MATERIALS AND METHODS
The present study was conducted to determine the prevalence of gastrointestinal helminthes, under field conditions, in cattle at the localities of Tehsil Jatoi of District Muzaffar Garh, Punjab, Pakistan.
Five hundred faecal samples of cattle were randomly collected in sterile polythene bags directly from rectum of each animal. These faecal samples were brought to District Diagnostic Lab. Muzaffar Garh for identification of eggs/larvae of helminthes or the adult parasites.
Faecal samples taken from 500 cattle were examined for helminthes eggs/larvae by using direct and indirect techniques and for identification of certain nematodes, coproculture were performed to obtain larval stage. Both eggs and larvae from coproculture were identified by using standard techniques as described by MAFF  and Soulsby . Briefly, one gram of faecal sample was mixed well in a drop of water and a relatively homogenous and transparent preparation was obtained and examined under microscope by placing a drop of suspension on slide with cover slip. At least three direct smears were examined from each sample. All the samples were also examined by concentration techniques, i.e. floatation and sedimentation.
For floatation technique, five grams of faeces was mixed in 30-50 mL of water and strained through a sieve to remove the course material. The mixture was allowed to sediment for half an hour. The supernatant was poured off and sediment was mixed in a saturated solution of common salt. The suspension was centrifuged at 1000 rpm for two minutes. The upper 0.1 mL of centrifuged suspension was transferred to a glass slide and examined under microscope at 10 X for the presence of helminthes eggs.
For sedimentation technique, five grams of faeces was mixed in 30-50 mL of water and strained through a sieve to remove the course material. The mixture was allowed to sediment for half an hour. After centrifugation, the supernatant was decanted and washing was continued until supernatant became clear. A drop was taken from sediment with Pasteur's pipette on slide and was examined under microscope at 10 X for the presence of helminthes eggs. Copro-culture Faecal cultures provide an environment suitable for hatching of helminth eggs and for their development. Faeces found positive for nematode eggs but confusing for exact identification were broken up finely, using either a large pestle and mortar or spatula and were placed in a glass jar or petridishes which was closed and incubated at a temperature of about 26 @C for 7 days. After incubation, samples were examined for larvae. Larvae were identified with the help of keys given by MAFF .
Data on the prevalence of helminthiasis was analyzed using Chi-square satatistical design on the basis of sex and age. Graphical representation of data was also done.
The present study was undertaken from January to June 2009 to determine the prevalence of gastrointestinal helminths in cattle, in Tehsil Jatoi District Muzaffar Garh. In cattle, an overall prevalence of helminths was 51% (255/500). The highest prevalence (105/500; 21%) was recorded for nematodes followed by trematodes (85/500; 17%), cestodes (10/500; 2%) and mixed helminth infections (55/500; 11%). A total of nine species of helminths including four nematodes, i.e. Toxocara vitulorum, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei; three trematodes, i.e. Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, Paramphistomum cervi; and two cestodes, i.e. Moniezia expansa, M. benedeni, were recorded. The prevalence of different species of helminthes is presented in Table I.
Toxocara vitulorum was the most prevalent species of helminth followed by Fasciola hepatica, Paramphistomum cervi, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei, Moniezia expansa, M. benedeni and F. gigantica. The mixed helminth infection (55/100; 11%) was often composed of 10 species including Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, Toxocara vitulorum, Moniezia expansa, Trichostrongylus spp., Paramphistomum cervi, Haemonchus placei, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum and Cooperia spp.
The results of age-wise prevalence in cattle revealed 34% adults (105/305) and 77% calves (150/195) having infection with one or the other species of helminthes. The prevalence of helminthes was higher in young animals as compared to old cattle. In cattle (Table VI), calves were found infected with seven species of helminthes, i.e. Toxocara vitulorum, Fasciola hepatica, Paramphistomum cervi, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei and Moniezia expansa; whereas, from adults, six species of helminthes were recorded, i.e. T. vitulorum, F. hepatica, P. cervi, O. radiatum, B. phlebotomum and F. gigantica in the order of deceasing prevalence. A total of 11% cattle (55/500) had mixed infection comprising 18% (35/195) in calves and 7% (20/305) in adults. The mixed infections were either with two, three or four species of helminthes.
The results on sex-wise prevalence in cattle revealed 65% males (100/155) and 45% females (155/345) having infection with one or the other species of helminthes. In buffaloes, 91% males (100/110) and 35% females (110/390) were infected with the helminthes. As far as small ruminants were concerned, in sheep, 77% male (150/195) and 52% females (160/305); and in goats, 56% male (120/215) and 49% females (140/285) were found infected. In cattle (Table X), five species of helminthes i.e. T. vitulorum, F. hepatica, P. cervi, O. radiatum and M. expansa were recorded from males and eight species i.e. T. vitulorum, F. hepatica, P. cervi, O. radiatum, B. phlebotomum, H. placei, M. benedeni and F. gigantica from females were recorded in the order of decreasing prevalence. Table X. Sex-wise prevalence of different species of helminths in cattle in Tehsil Jatoi, District Muzaffar Garh.
Helminthiasis is one of the major problems which affect the productivity of cattle. Losses caused by helminthes invariably depend on the prevalence, nature and intensity of infection and the management practices. In this investigation, highest prevalence of helminthes was recorded in cattle. The prevalence of helminthes was higher in young animals compared with the older ones, and higher in males compared with the females in the study. A total of nine species of helminthes (four nematodes i.e. Toxocara vitulorum, Oesophagostomum radiatum, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Haemonchus placei; three trematodes i.e.
Table I. Prevalence of different species of helminths in cattle.
Species of helminth###Number of Faceal Samples###Number of Faecal Samples###Percent Infected
Table II. Age-wise prevalence of different species of helminths in cattle in Tehsil Jatoi, District Muzaffar Garh
Species of helminth###Calf###Adult
Toxocara vitulorum###50/195; 25.64%###25/305; 8.19%
Fasciola hepatica###25/195; 12.82%###20/305; 6.55%
Paramphistomum cervi###20/195; 10.25%###15/305; 4.91%
Oesophagostomum radiatum###5/195; 2.56%###10/305; 3.27%
Bunostomum phlebotomum###5/195; 2.56%###5/305; 1.63%
Haemonchus placei###5/195; 2.56%###0/305; 0%
Moniezia expansa###5/195; 2.56%###0/305; 0%
M. benedeni###0/195; 0%###5/305; 1.63%
F. gigantica###0/195; 0%###5/305; 1.63%
Mixed infection###35/195; 18%###20/305; 7%
Overall prevalence###150/195; 77%###105/305; 34%
Table III. Sex-wise prevalence of different species of helminths in cattle in Tehsil Jatoi, District Muzaffar Garh
Species of helminth###Male###Female
Toxocara vitulorum###30/155; 19.35%###4/345; 13.04%
Fasciola hepatica###20/155; 12.90%###25/345; 7.24%
Paramphistomum cervi###15/155; 9.67%###20/345; 5.79%
Oesophagostomum radiatum###5/155; 3.22%###10/345; 2.89%
Bunostomum phlebotomum###0/155; 0%###10/345; 2.89%
Haemonchus placei###0/155; 0%###5/345; 1.44%
Moniezia expansa###5/155; 3.22%###0/345; 0%
M. benedeni###0/155; 0%###5/345; 1.44%
F. gigantica###0/155; 0%###5/345; 1.44%
Mixed infection###25/155; 16%###30/345; 9%
Overall prevalence###100/155; 65%###155/345; 45%
Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, Paramphistomum cervi; and two cestodes, i.e. Moniezia expansa, M. benedeni) were recorded from cattle. The helminths recorded in the study area have also been reported previously [10;11;12;13] from different areas of Pakistan and different parts of the world [14;15;16;17;18;19;20;21;22]. However, these workers have also reported some other helminthes in addition to those recorded in the current study. Such a regional variation in the record of various species has been widely reported. This variation may be attributed to different geographical distribution, host factors and climatic conditions required for the development of free-living stages of different nematodes.
A variety of factors like age, sex and breed of the host, grazing habits, level of education and economic capacity of the farmers, standard of management and anthelmintic used [23;24;25;26;27;28;29]can influence the prevalence of helminths. During this study, most of the farmers complained of ineffectiveness of the anthelmintics, which may be due to development of resistance against commonly used chemicals or their quality.
The most prevalent nematode recovered in this study from cattle was T. vitulorum, T. vitulorum was also reported to be the most frequently occurring nematode in cattle [30;31;32;33;34;35]. The higher prevalence could be due to the fact that this nematode has a relatively short generation interval and ability to take the advantage of favorable environmental conditions .
The climatic conditions of the study area vary from tropical to sub-tropical, which are conducive for the development of larval forms or intermediate hosts of helminthes. A warm and moist summer is well suited to the development and survival of the free-living stages of nematodes . Moreover, the availability of green pastures in irrigated or water logged area also help in perpetuation of the life cycles of different species of helminthes. The pasture larval counts and fecundity of different species of parasites of helminthes also play a role in the epidemiology of helminthes.
The higher infection in young animals than that in older ones may be attributed to lesser resistance because of lesser exposure to different species of helminthes compared with the older animals. It was, however, interesting to note that prevalence was higher in males compared with females. Normally, females are assumed to be more infected due to stress of pregnancy and parturition. This may be due to the practice of stall feeding females around pregnancy and thus lesser exposure to pasture contamination. Most of the researchers have observed higher rates of nematode infection/worm burden in female hosts compared with the males [23;24;37;26;28;29]. Higher prevalence of nematode parasites in females compared with males may be because of lowered resistance of female animals due to their reproductive events and insufficient/unbalanced diet against higher needs.
In addition to this, host factors were responsible for immunological impairment around parturition and thus resulted in peri-parturient eggs rise .
The authors are thankful to Dr. Rab Nawaz Kusar (DDLO), Dr. Ihsan-ur-Rehman Akbar (ADIO), Dr. Hassan Farooq Kazmi, Dr. Rana Sultan, Dr. Khalid Rasool, Dr. Nadeem Sial and Dr. Abdul Samad Bhatti (Veterinary Officers) for their technical support during research.
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