Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 22, Issue 3, pp 509–512 | Cite as

Hemoprotozoa in free-ranging birds from rural areas of Mazandaran Province, northern Iran

  • Mahdi FakharEmail author
  • Hamed Kalani
  • Bahman Rahimi-Esboei
  • Saber Armat
Original Article


A range of protozoa infect the blood of birds including Plasmodium, Aegyptianella, Haemoproteus, and Leukocytozoon and are transmitted by known vectors. The parasites occur worldwide and can cause reduced production, anemia, and even death. The aim of present study was to undertake the first survey of hemoprotozoa in the native birds of the Central zone of Mazandaran province. A total of 213 blood samples were collected from five different species of birds, 70 (32.9%) were infected by at least one parasite. The prevalence of infection by Aegyptianella pullorum, Plasmodium spp., and Haemoproteus spp. was 23.9%, 2.3%, and 6.6%, respectively. Our results showed a high prevalence of A. pullorum (38.3%) among ducks, as well as a high prevalence of Haemoproteus spp. (87.5%) in pigeons. Moreover, only ducks and turkeys were found to be infected with Plasmodium spp. Infections with multiple genera were found in 30.04% (64/213) of birds examined which included 91.4% of the 70 infected birds. It also seems that birds which migrate to the area annually might play an important role in infecting domestic birds in the province.


Hematozoa Blood protozoa Indigenous birds Plasmodium spp. Haemoproteus spp. Aegyptianella spp. 



The authors would like to thank the farmers for their field assistance. The work has been supported by Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences. The authors are grateful to Dr. H. Noyes for valuable comments and reading the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mahdi Fakhar
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Hamed Kalani
    • 3
  • Bahman Rahimi-Esboei
    • 3
  • Saber Armat
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Parasitology and Mycology, School of MedicineMazandaran University of Medical SciencesSariIran
  2. 2.Molecular and Cellular Biology Research Center, School of MedicineMazandaran University of Medical SciencesSariIran
  3. 3.Student Research CommitteeMazandaran University of Medical SciencesSariIran

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