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Acta Vet Hung. 2019 Mar;67(1):60-69. doi: 10.1556/004.2019.007.

Cardiopulmonary parasitic nematodes of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Serbia.

Author information

1 Department of Pathology and Parasitology , Novoseljanski put 33, 26000 Pančevo , Serbia.
2 Department of Pathology, Veterinary Specialized Institute 'Požarevac' , Požarevac , Serbia.
3 Department of Epizootiology, Veterinary Specialized Institute 'Kraljevo' , Kraljevo , Serbia.
4 Department of Animal Health , Novoseljanski put 33, 26000 Pančevo , Serbia.
5 Department of Epizootiology, Veterinary Specialized Institute 'Pančevo' , Novoseljanski put 33, 26000 Pančevo , Serbia.
6 Department of Pathology , Belgrade , Serbia.
7 Department of Parasitology, Scientific Veterinary Institute of Serbia , Belgrade , Serbia.


Among the wild canids, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is recognised as an important reservoir species for a range of parasites, including cardiopulmonary nematodes of public health and veterinary importance. As cross-host transmission between the red fox and domestic carnivores can play an important role in the epizootiology of cardiopulmonary parasitic diseases, the aim of the present investigations was to obtain data on the geographical distribution of cardiopulmonary nematodes of the red fox. The material for examination consisted of 83 foxes which were legally hunted at different locations during a three-month period from December 2017 to February 2018. The presence of four emerging species in Europe (Angiostrongylus vasorum, Crenosoma vulpis, Dirofilaria immitis and Eucoleus aerophilus) was revealed in red foxes of Serbia. Crenosoma vulpis and E. aerophilus were detected in foxes in both the plain and the mountainous areas across the country. Dirofilaria immitis is distributed in red foxes near alluvial rivers in Vojvodina province (northern Serbia). Angiostrongylosis caused by A. vasorum was demonstrated to exist in two enzootic foci with a high percentage of infected foxes in a plain area of northern Serbia. To the best of our knowledge, C. vulpis and A. vasorum were discovered for the first time in red foxes in central Serbia. The results provide strong evidence for veterinarians to take into consideration the parasitic nematodes discovered in red foxes in the differential diagnosis of diseases of companion animals. In the context of the 'One Health' approach the results related to the distribution of the zoonotic species E. aerophilus and D. immitis can be useful for medical epidemiology.


; Serbia; red fox


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