Spread of Tylodelphys mashonense (digenea: diplostomidae) by grey heron Ardea cinerea and great white egret a. Alba in Lake Victoria, Tanzania

Fred Chibwana, Gamba Nkwengulila


Despite the fact that Tylodelphys mashonense, parasites of the cranial cavity of the catfish Clarias gariepinus, are ubiquitous in freshwater systems, little is known on their spread. As such, we examined a total of 152 piscivorous birds, belonging to 6 species; 43 great cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, 33 grey heron Ardea cinerea, 26 hamerkop Scopus umbretta, 22 great white egret Ardea alba, 15 marabou stork Leptoptilos crumeniferus and 13 pied kingfisher Ceryle rudis foraging in the Lake Victoria. Out of the six bird species only A. cinerea and A. alba were found infected by T. mashonense with prevalence of 42.4% and 9.1%, respectively. These findings report T. mashonense in A. alba for the first time and its occurrence in A. cinerea in Tanzania is the first record outside Zimbabwe.

Keywords: Ardeidae, Ardea cinereaArdea alba, intestinal digeneans

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