Helminth fauna of the five phenotypes of gallus gallus domesticus in Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria
With the rise in the rearing of Gallus gallus domesticus (local chicken) in Nigeria, it becomes pertinent to study various aspects of diseases affecting this type of chicken. In this study, five phenotypes (normal, frizzle feathered, wild type, naked and crested neck) of the G. gallus domesticus in Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria were screened for helminth parasites. Nodular lesions found in the proventriculus were processed for histopathological examination. An overall prevalence (OP) of 84 % (95 % CI = 0.6473 to 0.9421) was recorded. The helminth fauna of the five phenotypes were Ascaridia galli (OP 32 %), Raillietina sp. (OP 64 %) and Tetrameres sp. (OP 16 %). Single and mixed infections were observed in the study; single infections of Raillietina sp. was the most prevalent (40 %), while a mixed infection of A. galli and Raillietina sp. occurred most (20 %). Crested neck had the highest prevalence (100 %) of helminth infection (95 % CI = 0.5109 to 1.0000), while the other four phenotypes had 80 % prevalence of helminth infections (95 % CI = 0.3596 to 0.9797) each. Microscopically, the proventricular nodules revealed embryonated eggs of the female Tetrameres sp. with ulceration of the proventricular mucosa, necrosis of the proventricular glands with haemorrhage. The high prevalence reported across all the phenotypes may likely be attributed to poor management and feeding habit of G. gallus domesticus. It is recommended that farmers adopt the intensive system of management for the rearing of G. gallus domesticus and regular anthelmintic treatment of their birds.