, Volume 50, Issue 3, pp 155–160 | Cite as

Helminth fauna of wild rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus in the Canary Islands, Spain

  • Á. Fernández-Álvarez
  • C. Feliu
  • J. Miquel
  • J. Torres
  • P. ForondaEmail author
Scientific Article


Helminths were examined in 292 wild rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) collected in Tenerife, Fuerteventura, La Palma and El Hierro islands, and La Graciosa islet (Canary Islands, Spain), from 2008 to 2012. Three species of cestodes, Taenia pisiformis (Taeniidae), Andrya cuniculi and Neoctenotaenia ctenoides (Anoplocephalidae), and three species of nematodes Trichostrongylus retortaeformis (Trichostrongylidae), Passalurus ambiguus (Oxyuridae) and Calodium hepaticum (Capillariidae), were identified. Only 2 species (N. ctenoides and P. ambiguus) were regularly present in all the islands, with an average prevalence above 50 %. Possible causes of the present distribution of helminths are commented. Insular and founder effects on parasite species in isolated ecosystems are demonstrated. The finding of the zoonotic species C. hepaticum solely in La Palma, represents a novel identification of this nematode in O. cuniculus in the Canary Islands.


Oryctolagus cuniculus Canary Islands helminth Calodium hepaticum 


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Copyright information

© Versita Warsaw and Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Á. Fernández-Álvarez
    • 1
  • C. Feliu
    • 2
    • 3
  • J. Miquel
    • 2
    • 3
  • J. Torres
    • 2
    • 3
  • P. Foronda
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.University Institute of Tropical Diseases and Public Health of the Canary IslandsUniversity of La LagunaLa Laguna, Tenerife, Canary IslandsSpain
  2. 2.Laboratory of Parasitology, Faculty of PharmacyUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  3. 3.IRBIO — Institut de Recerca de la BiodiversitatUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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