Anthelmintic efficacy of pumpkin seed (Cucurbita pepo Linnaeus, 1753) on ostrich gastrointestinal nematodes in a semiarid region of Paraíba State, Brazil
The aim of this study was to verify the in vivo effectiveness of pumpkin seed (Curcubita pepo Linnaeus, 1753) in naturally infected ostriches in the Cariri zone, semiarid region of Paraíba State, Brazil. Forty-eight ostriches were used, African Black breed, of 14 to 36 months old, naturally infected by gastrointestinal nematodes. These animals were divided into four groups of 12 ostriches. Group 1 consists of animals treated with 0.5 g/kg live weight (l. w.) of pumpkin seed meal; group 2 received 1 g/kg l. w. of pumpkin seed meal; group 3 was treated with Albendazole 5 %, at the dosage of 1 mL/10 kg l. w.; and Group 4 was the control group and do not received treatment. Groups 1 and 2 received the treatment for three consecutive days, orally, at intervals of 7 days, totaling nine administrations. The Albendazole 5 % was administered one time, at the beginning of the experiment, according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. The groups treated with pumpkin seed showed a significant decrease in egg counts per gram of feces (EPG), wherein group 2 (1 g/kg l. w.) was the most effective. The control and drug groups showed no reduction in EPG. The results of the present study demonstrate that the administration of pumpkin seed was effective in controlling gastrointestinal helminths in naturally infected ostriches.