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2009, Vol. 4 No. 1, Article 33

 

Prevalence of Coccidiosis in Cattle in Kashmir valley

B. A. Pandit


Division of Veterinary Parasitology,
Faculty of Veterinary Sciences and Animal Husbandry,
SKUAST-K, Shuhama, Hazratbal, Srinagar-190 006

 

e-mail address: basharat.pandit@gmail.com

 


ABSTRACT

Nine hundred seventy one cattle calves under two different managemental practices were screened for different eimerian oocysts, out of which 711 were found to be positive for Eimeria parasites. 70.7% and 75.8% of calves from organized and un-organized managements were found to harbour  Eimeria infection, respectively. The species identified included: Eimeria bovis, E. zuernii, E. bukidnonensis, E. subsphrica, E. auburnensis, E. ellipsodalis, E. Canadensis and E. cylindrica among which. Eimeria zuernii and E. bovis were most predominant species.

KEY WORDS

Eimeria, Calf, Kashmir.

INTRODUCTION

Coccidiosis is one of the most alarming problem for calf rearing industry and is responsible for morbidity and mortality. The most common clinical manifestations include inappetance, weakness, loss of weight, diarrhoea, depression and anaemia (Levine, 1985; Soulsby, 1982). In view of the lack of authentic information available regarding the prevalence of Eimeria sp. affecting cattle calves in Kashmir valley, the present study was undertaken to find out the prevalence and identify various species of Eimeria affecting cattle in the area.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

Calves maintained under two managemental conditions viz. organized (university & military farm) and unorganized (locally reared calves) were used in this experiment. A total of 971 faecal samples were collected from rectum and were kept individually in polythene bags and labelled as per the management groups. The samples were kept at 4˚C till examination. The oocysts were concentrated for examination by centrifugation with saturated common salt solution and were identified on the basis of morphological characters. The oocysts recovered were kept in two lots of 2.5% potassium dichromate solution (K2Cr2O7). The material of one lot was poured in Petri dishes to a depth of 3-4 mm and kept in 'Biological Oxygen Demand' (BOD) incubator at a temperature of 302˚C for sporulation. The other lot of culture was kept at 4˚C. The culture of both the lots was examined and morphological characters were studied before and after sporulation (Pellerdy, 1974; Soulsby, 1982).
The data was analyzed by Logit Model (Snedecor and Cochran, 1994).

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

The results of microscopic examination of 971 faecal samples are depicted in the Table 1. An overall occurrence of 73.2% infection recorded was mostly of a mixed type with two or more Eimeria sp. Among the two managemental practices, calves reared under organized farm management showed 70.7% infection while as the free range (un-organised) calves harboured 75.8% infection with Eimeria sp. The higher though non-significant rate of infection in free range calves may be attributed to access to oocyst infested grasses during grazing. The infection ranged between 54.7% (December) to 90.6% (March) under organized and 58.9% (June) to 90.2% (April) under un-organized managemental practices. The prevalence was the highest in spring from both managemental practices at 80.9 and 85.4% respectively. However, it ranged between 78.3, 74.1; 70.9, 78.7 and 58.3 and 68.6 percent during summer, autumn and winter seasons, respectively.
In Kashmir province the temperature starts declining from autumn season and falls to sub-zero levels during winter months as a result of which the environment becomes un-favourable for development of the oocysts. Also during the cold period animals too become stationed in houses due to snow fall. The infection starts increasing by spring season as environmental factors become conducive and more favourable through the summer season. Rajkhowa, et al., (2004) has however observed highest prevalence (84.6%) during monsoon, lowest (27.3%) in pre-monsoon and 41.7% in winter in mithun calves in Nagaland.
The sp. identified from pooled samples were: Eimeria bovis, E. zuernii, E. bukidnonensis, E. subsphrica, E. auburnensis, E. ellipsodalis, E. Canadensis and E. cylindrica. Out of these species Eimeria zuernii and E. bovis were most predominant. The predominance of Eimeria bovis was earlier reported in domestic animals by Deka et al., (1995), and in mithun calves by Rajkhowa, et al., (2004). Raote et al., (1989) examined 1114 animals of 3 cattle farms in Bombay region and encountered Eimerian sp. were: Eimeria bivis, E. auburnensis, E. alabanensis, E. zuernii, E. bukidonensis, E. cylindrica, E. ellipsoidalis, E. subspherics and E. brasiliensis.
There were no apparent clinical signs in most of the animals sampled for the study. However, among cases of  diarrhoea presented at clinics 20.5% were found positive for one or the other mentioned sp. of Eimeria. Few cases of one month old calves passing frank blood (Fig. 1) instead of faecal material were also seen and Eimeria zuernii oocysts obtained (full field filled with oocysts, Fig. 2).
This study also aimed to investigate the effects of season on flaring-up of the disease in calves and to suggest some concrete measures in reducing the infection to a good extent. Though there was non-significant (P>0.05) variation in the incidence of coccidiosis among various seasons and months under both organized and un-organized system of rearing (Table 1), however, higher incidence during spring and summer seasons due to very conducive atmosphere for development of Eimerian oocysts warrants organized anticoccidial prophylactic measures to be taken up from March to August so that the disease can be kept under control with a reduction in oocysts output as well.

REFERENCES

  1. Deka, DK; Choudhry, S and Chakraborty, A (1995), Parasites of domestic animals and birds in Likhimpur (Assam). J.Vet. Parasitol. 9(1) : 21-25

  2. Levine, ND (1985), Veterinary Protozoology. Iowa State University Press. Ames, Iowa.

  3. Pandit, BA (2006), Prevalence of caprine coccidiosis in Kashmir valley. J. Small Ruminants. (Accepted for publication)

  4. Pandit, BA and Mir, AS (1988), Prevalence of coccidial (Eimeria Sp) infection in sheep of Jammu and Kashmir. Indian Vet.J. 65:669-672

  5. Pellerdy, LP (1974), Coccidia and coccidiosis 2 Ed. Verlag Paul Parey, Berlin and Hamburg

  6. Rajkhowa, S; Bujarbarbulah, KM; Thong Kapenlo and Rajkhow, C (2004), Prevalence of eimerian species in Mithuns of Nagaland. Indian Vet. J. 81(5) : 573-574 

  7. Raote, YV; Narsapur, VS and Niphadkar, SM (1989), Studies on coccidial infection in bovines in Bombay region (Maharashtra). J. Bombay Vety. College 1(1) : 49-53

  8. Snedecor, GW and Cochran, W G (1994), Statistical Methods. 6th Edn. Iowa State University Press. Ames, Iowa

  9. Soulsby, EJL (1982), Helminths, Arthropods and Protozoa of Domesticated Animals. ELBS Bailliere Tindall, London

TABLE 1

 

Organized

Un-organized

Samples seen

Samples +ve

%age
prevalence

Samples seen

Samples
+ve

%age prevalence

 March

32

29

90.62

49

39

79.59

 April

57

41

71.92

41

37

90.24

 May

42

36

85.71

33

29

87.87

 Spring

131

106

80.91

123

105

85.36

 June

35

26

74.28

39

23

58.97

 July

42

33

78.57

40

31

77.50

 August

38

31

81.57

37

32

86.48

 Summer

115

90

78.26

116

86

74.13

 September

30

21

70.00

36

29

80.55

 October

32

23

71.87

39

30

76.92

 Autumn

62

44

70.96

75

59

78.66

 November

47

26

55.31

44

28

63.63

 December

53

29

54.71

50

33

66.00

 January

41

27

65.85

36

28

77.77

 February

39

23

58.97

39

27

69.23

 Winter

180

105

58.33

169

116

68.63

 Overall

488

345

70.69

483

366

75.77


Non-significant (P>0.05), variation among various seasons and months

 

FIGURE 1

Frank blood in fecal sample collected in polythene bag from a 28 day old calf

Frank blood collected in polythene bag from 28 day old calf.

 

FIGURE 2

Processed blood indicating full fields of oocysts of E. zuernii

Processed blood indicating full fields of oocysts of E. zuernii

 

 


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