, Volume 48, Issue 3, pp 145-154
Date: 08 Sep 2011

Revision of chamois infection by lung nematodes under ecological conditions of national parks of Slovakia with respect to ongoing global climate changes

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Summary

The aim of our study was to analyze helminth status and to evaluate ecological conditions for infections of chamois with lung nematodes in national parks of Slovakia during global warming. The autopsies and larvoscopic examination of faeces collected from localities inhabited by Tatra chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra tatrica) in Tatra National Park (TANAP) and Low Tatras National Park (NAPANT) revealed the presence of following protostrongylids: Muellerius capillaris, Neostrongylus linearis and the specific chamois species Muellerius tenuispiculatus. Same species of lung nematodes were found in introduced chamois of Alpine origin (Rupicapra rupicapra rupicapra) in the Slovak National Park Veľká Fatra (NAPVF) and the Slovak Paradise National Park (NAPSR), and in the latter park also geohelminth Dictyocaulus viviparus was sporadically determined. The mean prevalence of lung nematodes in individual parks varied from 70.9 to 97.2 %. The mean number of L1 larvae per 1 g of faeces in Tatra chamois from TANAP in Belianske Tatras and in Alpine subspecies from NAPSR corresponded to a high level of infection (120.3 and 110.1, respectively). In other studied biotopes the mean number of L1 larvae (19.4–42.5) revealed the moderate infection. Although no significant differences concerning levels of infection within the monitored years were observed, the level of infection during the summer was significantly lower than that during spring and autumn periods. The variety of snail species as the intermediate hosts of lung nematodes provide suitable conditions for the development of lung nematodes in the all studied Slovak National Parks. Global climatic changes have also likely contributed to an increase of infectivity rate.