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Vet World. 2018 Aug;11(8):1179-1182. doi: 10.14202/vetworld.2018.1179-1182. Epub 2018 Aug 28.

Intestinal parasites among migrant barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) in the central region of Mazandaran Province, Northern Iran.

Author information

1
Molecular and Cell Biology Research Center, Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran.
2
Student Research Committee, Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran.

Abstract

Aim:

Swallows are a family of migratory birds found worldwide except Antarctica. Annually, a number of species of swallows migrate to Iran. As they make their nests close to human living places, this may be a potential risk for public health. Conversely, no study has been conducted on intestinal parasitic infections of these birds so far. Therefore, the objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of intestinal parasites in migratory swallows (Hirundo rustica) in the central region of Mazandaran Province, Northern Iran.

Materials and Methods:

In this cross-sectional study, 205 feces samples from two districts (Sari and Qaemshahr) in the central region of Mazandaran were randomly collected during the summer and spring sessions of 2016-2017. The collected samples were examined using the routine direct fecal examination and formalin-ethyl acetate concentration. In addition, the samples were examined by cold acid-fast staining method to detect possible Cryptosporidium oocysts.

Results:

The results of this study indicated that 38 samples (18.5%) were infected with intestinal parasites. Among the helminthic parasites, eight genera and species were identified as follows: Ascaridia galli, Syngamus trachea, Raillietina, Toxocara spp., Choanotaenia, Taenia spp., Ascaridia spp., and Moniezia spp. In addition, among protozoan parasites, only the Coccidia spp. oocysts were identified.

Conclusion:

Our findings showed a relatively high prevalence of parasitic infections in migratory barn swallows in Mazandaran Province. Given the presence of zoonotic parasites in the samples, further investigations are needed to identify all parasites fauna, particularly zoonotic species among swallows in the region.

KEYWORDS:

Hirundo rustica; Iran; barn swallow; intestinal parasites; zoonosis

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