Gastrointestinal Parasites of Chickens Managed under Different Production Systems in Selected Areas of East Hararghe, Ethiopia

  • Anteneh Wondimu College of Veterinary Medicine, Haramaya University, P. O. Box 138, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
  • Yehualashet Bayu College of Veterinary Medicine, Haramaya University, P. O. Box 138, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
  • Dechas Mohammed Haramaya Woreda Agriculture Office, Haramaya, Ethiopia
Keywords: Chicken, Eimeria, Nematode, Prevalence, Production systems


A cross sectional study was conducted from November 2017 to April 2018 to estimate the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites of chicken managed in different production systems in selected areas of east Hararghe, Ethiopia. A total of 324 local and 126 exotic breeds of chicken were used in the study. Chickens in the farm and village were followed until drop feces and fecal samples were carefully collected from the top of freshly dropped feces excluding soil contamination for parasitological examination. Flotation and McMaster counting techniques were used for qualitative and quantitative evaluation of fecal samples, respectively. Out of the 450 chickens’ feces examined, 27.1% and 49.5% were positive for Eimeria oocysts and nematode eggs, respectively. High prevalence (P<0.05) of coccidian infection was observed in exotic breed (48.4%) chickens as compared to the free-range local chickens (18.8%), while high prevalence (P<0.05, COR, 0.4) of nematode infection was observed in local (57.1%) than exotic (0%) chicken breeds. Nearly equal rate of prevalence was recorded in different sex groups for coccidia (male 27.4%, female 27%) and nematodes (male 41.7%, female, 40.8%). A higher nematodes prevalence was recorded in extensive (62.6%) than intensive (13.3%) and semi-intensive (12.9%) management systems (P<0.05). Eimeria infection was greater for intensive (31.7%) and semi-intensive (28.6%) than extensive (24.4%), management systems. Majority of the chickens harbored light degree of coccidia infection. Ascaridia galli (37.1%) was the dominant nematode followed by Heterakis gallinarum (10.4%) and Dispharnx (2%). In conclusion, Eimeria and gastrointestinal nematodes were important parasites in the study area. It was recommended that awareness should be created on the importance, prevention, and control of coccidiosis and gastrointestinal nematodes for exotic chicken producers and for chicken managed under extensive system, respectively.