Prevalence of selected intestinal helminths parasites in pigs and associated risk factors in Makindye Ssabagabo Municipality, Wakiso District
Nakityo, Grace Nabakka
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Piggery is one of the fast growing enterprises and is giving employment to many households in Uganda. It is, however, facing several constraints, one of them being worm infestation. These internal parasites cause considerable economic losses through stunted growth of the pigs making maintenance of the pigs to market weights very expensive hence less profits to the farmers. A cross – sectional study was conducted in Makindye Ssabagabo Municipality to determine the prevalence, distribution of specific gastro-intestinal helminths in the area and the risk factors that predispose the pigs to worm infestations. Pigs’ faecal samples were picked from farms selected randomly by the local council leaders of the area in the municipality. Semi-structured questionnaires were used to collect the required data associated with worm infestation among the pig farms and the predisposing factors. 36 pig farms were visited for sample collection in the municipality. 22 farms from Masajja, 8 farms from Ndejje and 6 farms from Bunanamwaya divisions. A total of 51 samples were collected from all the three divisions. One sample was picked from farms that had 1to 3 pigs and 2 samples were picked from farms which had more than 3 pigs. Thus, 1 sample was picked from 21 farms and 2 samples were picked from 15 farms which gave a cumulative sample size of 51. Using both the floatation and concentration techniques, the samples were assessed for presence of gastro-intestinal helminths’ larva or eggs. The McMaster egg counting technique was used for quantification. 44 samples contained either parasitic eggs or larvae or both. This gave an overall gastro-intestinal helminths prevalence of 86.3% in the pig population studied. It was also found out that 24 samples contained more than one parasite species giving a 47.1% co-infection prevalence among the study population. Six intestinal parasites were identified. These included: Ascari suum, Strongyloids, Metastrongylus, Strongyle, Trichuris and Oesophagostomum. Ascaris suum was the most prevalent (53.42%), followed by Strongyle (31.51%), Strongyloids (6.85%), Trichuris (4.11%) and Metastrongylus (2.74%). The least prevalent intestinal parasite was Oesophagostomum. Statistical analysis showed that feeding pigs on kitchen refuse, source of water on the farm and pig waste management on the farm were significantly associated to helminths infestation in the studied pig population. The rest of the risk factors did not show any significance at 95% confidence level.