Trichuris burdens in zoo-housed Colobus guereza

V. Melfi, F. Poyser

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Trichuris spp. infect the majority of captive primate species along with an estimated 1049 million people worldwide, making it an important zoonosis [Stephenson, L. S., Holland, C. V., & Cooper, E. S. Parasitology, 121(Suppl.), S73-S95, 2000]. We investigated the efficacy of methods used to evaluate the prevalence of Trichuris spp. in 2 groups (n=12) of socially housed Abyssinian colobus (Colobus guereza kikuyensis) at Paignton Zoo Environmental Park and the factors that may affect density. We collected individual and group fecal samples over 6 mo and estimated burden (egg counts/g of feces) of Trichuris spp. via the McMaster technique. Shedding was significantly higher in the afternoon than in the morning (matched-pairs t-test: t([5])=-4.46, p <0.01) and in dominant adult male colobus (Spearman rank: r([5])=-0.94, p <0.01; age: r([5])=0.89, p <0.05). Parasitological studies of zoo-housed primates can be a useful tool to explore factors that may affect burdens of Trichuris spp. in them.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1449-1456
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Primatology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Colobus monkey
  • Dominance
  • Hierarchy
  • Parasite
  • Trichuris spp.


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