Prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in Vervet monkeys (Chlorocebue pygerythrus) at Uganda wildlife education center.
Atim, Dinah Loy
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Vervet monkeys are among the most widely spread African monkeys, they are an excellent model to understand parasitic disease transmission because of their tolerance to anthropogenic disturbance. Vervet monkeys at UWEC move in and out to the surrounding community. In the study, a total of 50 Vervet monkeys were randomly sampled; 30 females and 20 males. Of the 50, 15 were adult, 19 sub-adults and 16 juveniles. After collection, samples were analyzed at Makerere University, College of Natural Sciences. Identification of the GIPs was done with the help of the parasite identification keys prepared by Ryan & Shimizu (2018) Altogether, 13 GIPs were identified which included; Cryptosporidium sp, Gardia sp, Fascilopsis buski, Oesophagostomum sp, Mammonogamus sp, Trichuris trichuria, Entamoeba coli, Entamoeba histolytica, Strongyloides stercoracis, Chilomastix mensili, Strongyloide fulleborni, Ascaris lumbricus, Taenia saginata. Using Jaccard’s Index, the level if similarity of presence of GIPs between male and female was 35.71% , adult and sub adult was 38.46%, adult and juvenile was 16.67% and sub-adult and juvenile was 33.33%. Kruskal-Wallis was also used to find out if there was difference in the distribution of GIPs amongst the different age classes. There was a significant difference in the distribution of GIPs among different age classes. Mann-whiney was also used to find out if sex had an effect on the distribution of GIPs in the Vervet monkeys. The U value was 70. The critical value of U at p<.05 was 64. Therefore, the result is not significant at p<.05. Sex has no effect on the distribution of GIPs in Vervet monkeys. I observed a high prevalence 50% across the 50 individuals, with the most prevalent parasite being Cryptosporidium sp (50%), followed by Entamoeba coli (20%).I found Entamoeba histolytic and Strongyloide stercoracis in only a minority of the animals (2%). A total of 6 parasite genera for the adult age group, which showed higher parasite richness than the sub adult age group (5) and the juvenile age group (3). This is so because adults feed on variety of food as compared to the sub adults and juveniles, the adults also move wider ranges looking for food as they come into contact with more parasites, On the other hand sub adults also feed on more varieties than juveniles. Given the fact that some of these parasites are zoonotic for example mammomonogamiasis caused by Mammomonogamus sp. UWEC should put in place preventive models which observe the movement of Vervet monkeys, interaction with other animals and personnel.