Prevalence of Ectoparasites of Sheep and Goats in Banja District, North Western Ethiopia
A cross-sectional study was conducted from November 2016 to April 2017 using 411 small ruminants (sheep=267 and goats=144) to identify ectoparasites fauna, estimate the prevalence, and associated risk factors. The study showed 74% of the examined animals were infested by at least one species of ectoparasites. Six percent of the animals were harboring mixed infestation with different species of parasite. Nine species of ectoparasites belonging to flea (36%), tick (21.7%), lice (8.8%), and sheep ked (1.5%) were identified. Among ectoparasites, Ctenocephalides species (24%) were the most abundant. Damalinia ovis, Rhipicephallus decoloratus, Hyalomma marignatum ufipes, Solenopotes capillatus, Amblyomma variegatum, Echidnophaga gallinacea, Xenopsylla cheopsis, and Melophagus ovinus were also detected at different proportions. The ectoparasites infestation in sheep was significantly higher than goats. Younger (< 2 years) animals and females were more susceptible to ectoparasites infestation than adult and male (P<0.05). Animals with poor body condition harbored greater number of ectoparasites than medium and good body condition (P<0.05). Belly was the main predilection site for ectoparasites attachment followed by chest, limb, face, brisket, neck, back, and rump. The higher prevalence of ectoparasites infestation of sheep and goats in the study area suggests the need for strategic implementation of control programs.