Prevalence of Gastro-Intestinal Helminths in Slaughtered Cattle in Walungu Territory, South Kivu Province, Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo

An abattoir cross sectional survey was carried out to determine the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasitic helminths in slaughtered cattle at Kankinda and Mugogo Municipal abattoirs located in Walungu territory, South Kivu province, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Using qualitative and quantitative coprological examination, 200 fecal samples were tested. Gastrointestinal helminths’ eggs were detected in only 148 samples tested giving an overall prevalence of 74%. The most diversity class was nematodes with four species, followed by trematode and cestode with two species in each, both representing species abundances of 44.4%, 22.2% and 22.2% respectively and only one protozoan species was identified (11.1%). However, the prevalence of helminths in relation to sex and age group revealed no statistical difference at P value >0.05. The exotic breed presented the highest infection rate of 72.5% (OR=4.6, 95% CI: 1.9–11.1; p=0.0004) compared to the local breed. Similarly high prevalence of helminthes was found in slaughtered cattle from local farms 90.6% (OR=4.1; 95% CI: 1.9–9.5; p=0.0001) compared to cattle imported from Rwanda. The prevalent helminthes species identified were Eimeria bovis (74%), followed by Schistosoma bovis (41%); Hymenolepis diminuta (39%); Toxocara vitulorum (32.5%) and the least species observed were Fasciola gigantica (18%); Strongyloides papillosus (11.5%); Trichonstrongylus sp (7%); Haemonchus spp (6.5%); and Moniezia spp (6%). These findings reflect a growing burden of gastrointestinal parasite infections at abattoir level. Therefore, a proper management, improved hygiene and regular deworming practices should be institutionalized for prevention and control of parasitic infections in livestock. Keywords: Parasitic infection; Public health; Bovine; Prevalence; South Kivu.
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