Aim: This study was conducted with the aim of determining the prevalence and type of ectoparasitic fauna and associated host-related risk factors in cattle in Bench Maji Zone, Southwestern, Ethiopia, from October 2011 to April 2012.
Materials and Methods: A total of 212 cattle (84 male and 128 female) were sampled and examined. Both physical examination and laboratory investigation were employed in the study.
Results: The study revealed that cattle in the study area were infested with single (24.5%) and multiple (2.8%) ectoparasites with an overall prevalence of 27.3% (58/212). Overall seven species of ectoparasites which belong to tick (16.0%), lice (10.4%) and mite (0.9%), were identified. Seven species of ticks which belong to three genera (Boophilus sp., Amblyoma sp., and Rhipicephalus sp.) were identified. Among the species of ticks Boophilus decoloratus (8.0%), Amblyoma variegatum (4.7%) and Amblyoma coherens (4.2%) were the dominant ones in a decreasing order. Among the three species of lice, the most prevalent was Linognathus vituli (4.7%) followed by Haematopinus euysternus (3.8%) and Damalina bovis (1.9%). Psoroptes bovis (0.9%) was the only mite species recorded in this study. For all ectoparasites there was no statistical deference (p>0.05) between the prevalence of any of the ectoparaisite infestation with regard to sex, age and body condition score.
Conclusion: The present study revealed a high prevalence and diverse fauna of ectoparasites that could potentially hamper the productivity of cattle in the study area, hence serious attention is warranted.
ectoparasites, Ethiopia, prevalence, ruminants