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DESCRIPTIVE EPIDEMIOLOGY OF THE MAIN INTERNAL PARASITES ON ALTERNATIVE PIG FARMS IN FRANCE

DESCRIPTIVE EPIDEMIOLOGY OF THE MAIN INTERNAL PARASITES ON ALTERNATIVE PIG FARMS IN FRANCE ABSTRACTAlternative pig farms, which do not raise animals in closed buildings with slatted and/or concrete floors, have critical points that need particular attention. Internal parasitism is one, as the farming conditions in such structures are more favorable to the development and survival of parasites. The objectives of this study, carried out on 70 alternative farms in continental France, were to (i) estimate the frequency and level of infestation by the main internal parasites on these farms, and (ii) define their typology according to the level of parasitism. For this purpose, fecal samples were taken for coprological analysis from 10 sows, 10 pigs aged 10–12 wk, and 10 pigs at the end of the fattening period. Blood samples were also taken for serological analysis (targeting Ascaris suum and Toxoplasma gondii) from 10 sows and 10 pigs at the end of the fattening period. Of the 70 farms, only 5 had no helminth egg or coccidian oocyst. Coccidia oocysts were observed in 79% of the farms, while eggs of Oesophagostomum spp./Hyostrongylus rubidus, Ascaris suum, and Trichuris suis were found in 47%, 16%, and 36% of the farms, respectively. On each infested farm, an average of 56.8% of sows, 23.8% of grower pigs, and 38.9% of finisher pigs were parasitized. At least 1 Ascaris suum-seropositive finisher pig was found on 91% of the farms, and at least 1 Toxoplasma gondii-seropositive finisher pig or sow on 60% of the farms. Data on housing, animal management, and health management (particularly parasite control) were collected to characterize the typology of farms according to their level of parasitism. The variables defining these farm typologies differed according to the parasites. Access to the outdoors for breeding stock was a characteristic of the farms most heavily infested with helminths or T. gondii. Conversely, the farms with the lowest frequency of coccidia oocyst infestation were characterized by free-range farrowing facilities and also by the presence of slatted floors, mostly plastic in our study, rather than straw bedding in the farrowing rooms. The level of biosecurity concerning the storage of straw for pig bedding was another discriminating factor for parasitism level of helminths and T. gondii. Farms with the highest levels of helminth parasitism were more likely not to practice an all-in-all-out postweaning system and to deworm their grower/finisher pigs less frequently than farms with the lowest levels of helminth parasitism. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Journal of Parasitology Allen Press

DESCRIPTIVE EPIDEMIOLOGY OF THE MAIN INTERNAL PARASITES ON ALTERNATIVE PIG FARMS IN FRANCE

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The Journal of Parasitology , Volume 108 (4): 16 – Jul 25, 2022

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Publisher
Allen Press
Copyright
© American Society of Parasitologists 2022
ISSN
0022-3395
eISSN
1937-2345
DOI
10.1645/21-126
Publisher site
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Abstract

ABSTRACTAlternative pig farms, which do not raise animals in closed buildings with slatted and/or concrete floors, have critical points that need particular attention. Internal parasitism is one, as the farming conditions in such structures are more favorable to the development and survival of parasites. The objectives of this study, carried out on 70 alternative farms in continental France, were to (i) estimate the frequency and level of infestation by the main internal parasites on these farms, and (ii) define their typology according to the level of parasitism. For this purpose, fecal samples were taken for coprological analysis from 10 sows, 10 pigs aged 10–12 wk, and 10 pigs at the end of the fattening period. Blood samples were also taken for serological analysis (targeting Ascaris suum and Toxoplasma gondii) from 10 sows and 10 pigs at the end of the fattening period. Of the 70 farms, only 5 had no helminth egg or coccidian oocyst. Coccidia oocysts were observed in 79% of the farms, while eggs of Oesophagostomum spp./Hyostrongylus rubidus, Ascaris suum, and Trichuris suis were found in 47%, 16%, and 36% of the farms, respectively. On each infested farm, an average of 56.8% of sows, 23.8% of grower pigs, and 38.9% of finisher pigs were parasitized. At least 1 Ascaris suum-seropositive finisher pig was found on 91% of the farms, and at least 1 Toxoplasma gondii-seropositive finisher pig or sow on 60% of the farms. Data on housing, animal management, and health management (particularly parasite control) were collected to characterize the typology of farms according to their level of parasitism. The variables defining these farm typologies differed according to the parasites. Access to the outdoors for breeding stock was a characteristic of the farms most heavily infested with helminths or T. gondii. Conversely, the farms with the lowest frequency of coccidia oocyst infestation were characterized by free-range farrowing facilities and also by the presence of slatted floors, mostly plastic in our study, rather than straw bedding in the farrowing rooms. The level of biosecurity concerning the storage of straw for pig bedding was another discriminating factor for parasitism level of helminths and T. gondii. Farms with the highest levels of helminth parasitism were more likely not to practice an all-in-all-out postweaning system and to deworm their grower/finisher pigs less frequently than farms with the lowest levels of helminth parasitism.

Journal

The Journal of ParasitologyAllen Press

Published: Jul 25, 2022

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