A survey of ecto- and endo-parasites of domestic pigeons (Columba livia) in Mashhad, Iran

Document Type : Research Articles


Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran


As there is no data available on parasite infection of pigeons (Columba livia) in the region, the present study was carried out on domestic pigeons in Mashhad city in the north-east of Iran. Three hundred specimens were examined for the presence of ecto and endoparasites. A total of 300 pigeons, %21.6(n=65) and %15.3(n=46) were infected with nematodes and cestodes respectively whereas no trematodes were found. The helminths and their prevalence were Nematoda: Ascaridia columbae (20.37%), Capillaria bursata (3.7%), Capillaria caudinfillata (1.85%), Eulimdana clava (2.7%), Gongylonema spp (0.9), Cestoda: Choanotaenia infundibulum (11.11%), Raillietina echinobothrida (6.48%). Six different species of ectoparasites: Columbicloa columbae (42.8%), Pseudolynchia canariensis (16.1%), Menocanthus stramineus (10.7%), Menopon gallinae (7.1%), Lipeurus caponis (5.3%), Argas reflexus (3.5%) and 2 haemoparasites species Haemoproteus columbae (50%) and Leucocytozoon spp. (2%) were identified. Further studies are recommended in assessing the effects of the parasites on the pigeons’ health and production.


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