Prevalence and Associated Risk Factors of Eimeria in Sheep of Punjab, Pakistan
A cross-sectional study was carried out to determine the prevalence, species characterization and associated risk factors with Eimeria (E.) in sheep of district Toba Tek Singh from April, 2009 to March, 2010. Of the total 486 faecal samples examined for Eimeria, 209 (43%) were found infected with five species of Eimeria. Amongst the identified species of Eimeria, E. ovinoidalis was the commonest one (48.32%), followed in order by E. ahsata, E. intricata, E. parva and E. faurei with prevalence of 45.45, 28.71, 24.40 and 19.14 percent respectively. Peak prevalence was observed in August. Wet season (rainy and post-rainy) was found to be favourable for Eimeria infection. Lambs had significantly higher prevalence (P < 0.05) of Eimeria than adults. Similarly higher prevalence of Eimeria was observed in female as compared to male. Among management and husbandry practices; watering system, housing system, floor type and herd size strongly influenced the prevalence of Eimeria. Coccidiosis was more prevalent in closed housing system, non-cemented floor type, pond watered animals and larger herds (P < 0.05) as compared to open housing system, partially cemented floor type, tap watered animals and smaller herds respectively. Feeding system, breed and body condition of animals were not found as risk factors (P>0.05) influencing prevalence of Eimeria.
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