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Prevalence of amphistomiasis and its association with Fasciola gigantica infections in Zambian cattle from communal grazing areas

  • A.M. Phiri (a1), I.K. Phiri (a1) and J. Monrad (a2)

To estimate prevalence of amphistomiasis and its association with bovine Fasciola gigantica infections in Zambia, 709 faeces of cattle presented for slaughter from three major cattle rearing areas of Central, Southern and Western provinces were analysed. The prevalence rate of amphistomes was 51.6%. Egg counts per gram (EPG) of faeces ranged from 0 to 385 with a mean (± SEM) of 11.96±1.07. The origin of the cattle had a significant influence (P<0.001) on the prevalence rate. Fasciola gigantica infections accounted for 46.7% of the cattle examined. The mean EPG count (± SEM) was 6.3±0.66 with a range of 0 to 223. A total of 34.6% were mixed infections while single Fasciola and amphistome infections represented 12.1% and 17.1%, respectively. Significantly more cattle (63.8%) were infected with either single or both trematode infections (P<0.0001) than not. Mixed trematode infections were highest in the Southern province (80.0%) while the lowest were recorded in Central province (16.3%). A positive correlation (r2=0.0428) was present in mixed infections. In order to minimize losses, epidemiology and cross-resistance of amphistomiasis and fascioliasis should be studied in different ecological regions of Zambia to formulate efficient control programmes.

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