Case report of hook worm Grammocephalus hybridatus and stomach bot Cobboldia elephantis infections in a free-ranging Asian Elephant Elephas maximus in Tamil Nadu, India

Main Article Content

Kaveri Theerthagiri Kavitha
https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7635-9499
Chirukandoth Sreekumar
https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2875-4034
Bhaskaran Ravi Latha

Abstract

Elephants in the wild are susceptible to many gastrointestinal parasites. In the present study, necropsy was conducted on a free-ranging Asian Elephant Elephas maximus female aged about 15 years which died at Coimbatore forest range, Tamil Nadu state, India. The necropsy revealed that the liver was infected with round worms and the stomach was heavily infested with dipteran larvae. These round worms and larvae were collected and processed by dehydrating in ascending grades of alcohol and then cleared in carbolic acid. The cleared samples were mounted and examined under light microscopy for species identification. Faecal samples collected from the rectum were analysed by sedimentation for the presence of helminth eggs. On microscopic examination, the head end of the round worms showed a buccal capsule which possessed a pair of semilunar ventral cutting plates. Male worms showed well-developed bursa at the posterior end. The anterior end of the dipteran larvae showed two powerful oral hooks with cephalopharyngeal skeleton. Anterior spiracle appeared as a short club-shaped tube with 12 lobes. The abdominal segments of the larvae had a row of belt-like triangular spines. The posterior spiracles of the larvae had three longitudinal parallel slits in each spiracle with closed peritreme. Based on the above morphological characters, the round worms and larvae were identified as Grammocephalus hybridatus and Cobboldia elephantis, respectively.  Strongyle eggs were identified in the faecal sample based on the morphology of thin shell and segmented yolk. This appears to be the first report of G. hybridatus infection in a free-ranging elephant in Tamil Nadu state, India.

Article Details

How to Cite
[1]
Kaveri Theerthagiri Kavitha, Chirukandoth Sreekumar and Bhaskaran Ravi Latha 2022. Case report of hook worm Grammocephalus hybridatus and stomach bot Cobboldia elephantis infections in a free-ranging Asian Elephant Elephas maximus in Tamil Nadu, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 14, 4 (Apr. 2022), 20915–20920. DOI:https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.6910.14.4.20915-20920.
Section
Short Communications

References

Abeysekara, N., R.P.V.J. Rajapkse & R.S. Rajakaruna (2018). Comparative cross-sectional survey on gastrointestinal parasites of captive, semi-captive, and wild elephants of Sri Lanka. Journal of Threatened Taxa 10(5): 11583–11594. https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.3406.10.5.11583-11594

Abeysinghe, K.S., A.N.F. Perera, J. Pastorini, K. Isler, C. Mammides & P. Fernando (2017). Gastrointestinal strongyle infections in captive and wild elephants in Sri Lanka. Gajah 46: 21–27.

Abhijith, T.V., M. Ashokkumar, R.T. Dencin & C. George (2018). Gastrointestinal parasites of Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus L, 1798) in south Wayanad forest division, Kerala, India. Journal of Parasitic Diseases 42(3): 382–390. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12639-018-1012-0

Ananda, K.J., N.K. Dharanesha, P. Giridhar & S.M.B. Gowda (2017). Cobboldia elephantis (Cobbold, 1866) larval infestation in an Indian Elephant (Elephas maximus). Journal of Parasitic Diseases 41(2): 364–366. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12639-016-0805-2

Bhalerao, G.D. (1935). Helminth parasites of the domesticated animals in India. Scientific Monograph No. 6. Imperial Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi.

Datta, B., A.K. Chakravarthy & A. Raquib (1972). A successful treatment of Choniangium epistomum and Cobboldia elephantis larvae infection in elephants with tetramisole (Nilverm). Indian Veterinary Journal 49: 1158–1159

Dharmarajan, G., M. Raman & M.C. John (2005). Effect of season on helminth loads of wild herbivores and cattle in the Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, southern India. Zoos’ Print Journal 20: 1766–1769.

Elsheikha, H. & V.Obanda (2010). Parasitic impact on elephant conservation: a Kenyan view. Vet Times, the website for the veterinary profession. Accessed on 22.12.2021. https://www.vettimes.co.uk

Fernando, A. & C.H. Fernando (1961). Report on the helminth parasites of an Asian Elephant which died in Singapore. Ceylon Veterinary Journal 9(4): 99–106.

Fowler, M. & S.K. Mikota (2006). Elephant biology, medicine and surgery. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford, 166 pp.

Gaur, S.N.S., M.S. Sethi, H.C. Tewari & O. Prakash (1979). A note on prevalence of helminth parasites in wild and zoo animals in Uttar Pradesh. Indian Journal of Animal Sciences 46: 159–161.

Hamilton, D.G. & M.Zuk (1982). Heritable true fitness and bright birds: a role for parasites? Science 218: 384–387.

Islam, S. & A. Talukdar (2014). Grammocephalus hybridatus infection in a free ranging Asian Elephant from Assam. Journal of Veterinary Parasitology 28(1): 37–39.

Kakkassery, M.P., V.S. Kumar, Z. Arun, L.F. Anand & P.R.P. Kumar (2011). EEHV like haemorrhagic myocarditis in a wild Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus). Journal of Indian Veterinary Association Kerala 9(1): 51–52.

Kumar, K.G.A., R. Ravindran, T. Surendranathan, E.V. Joy & A. George (2011). Occurrence of bile duct hook worms in a wild elephant of Wayanad, Kerala. Zoo’s Print 26(3): 26–27.

Lynsdale, C.L., H.S. Mumby, A.D. Hayward, K.U. Mar & V. Lummaa (2017). Parasite-associated mortality in a long-lived mammal: Variation with host age, sex, and reproduction. Ecology and Evolution 7: 10904–10915. https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.3559

Nishanth, B., S.R. Srinivasan, M.G. Jayathangaraj & R. Sridhar (2012). Incidence of Endoparasitism in free-ranging elephants of Tamilnadu State. Tamilnadu Journal of Veterinary Sciences 8(3): 171–173.

Obanda, V., T. Iwaki, N.M. Mutinda & F. Gakuya (2011). Gastrointestinal parasites and associated pathological lesions in starving free-ranging African elephants. South African Journal of Wildlife Research 41(2): 167–172.

Panda, S.K., D.N. Panda & N.K. Parhi (2005). Occurrence of Cobboldia elephantis (Cobbold, 1866) larvae in a wild elephant. Journal of Veterinary Parasitology 19(2): 163–164.

Pillay, K.R.S., S.A. Rahman, K.S. Hegde & D. Rajasekharan (1976). Grammocephalosis in an Indian elephant in Mysore. Indian Veterinary Journal 53: 670.

Price, P.W., M. Westoby, B. Rice, P.R. Atsatt, R.S. Fritz, J.N. Thompson & K. Mobley (1986). Parasite Mediation in Ecological Interactions. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 17(1): 487–505.

Rajasekariah, G.R., K.S. Hegde & K.R.S. Pillay (1975). Unusual occurrence of G. hybridatus, Westhuysen, 1938, in verminous nodule in the stomach of an Indian elephant (Elephas maximus). Mysore Journal of Agricultural Science 9: 141-145.

Raquib, A. (1970). Record of Cobboldia elephantis (Cobbold, 1866) in elephant in Assam. Orissa Veterinary Journal 5: 28

Riddle, H.S., B.A. Schulte, A.A. Desai & L.V.D. Meer (2010). Elephants: a conservation overview. Journal of Threatened Taxa 2(1): 653–661. https://doi.org/10.11609/JoTT.o2024.653-61

Sathianesan, V., K. Chandrasekharan, C. Pythal & R.K. Sundaram ( 1979). Anthelmintic efficacy of oxibendazole against the common strongylids in elephants. Kerala Journal of Veterinary sciences 10(1): 153–156.

Scott, M.E. & A. Dobson (1989).The role of parasites in regulating host abundance. Parasitology Today 5: 176–183. https://doi.org/10.1016/0169-4758(89)90140-3

Seneviratna, P. (1955). A checklist of helminths in the Department of Veterinary Pathology, University of Ceylon, Peradeniya. Ceylon Veterinary Journal 3: 32–37.

Seneviratna, P. & J.B. Jayasinghe (1968). Some parasites from the Ceylon Elephants (Elephas maximus). Ceylon Veterinary Journal 15: 28.

Soulsby, E.J.L. (1982). Helminths, Arthropods and Protozoa of Domesticated Animals. 7th Edition. ELBS and Baillere Tindal, London.

Sundaram, R.K. (1966). Some common elephant parasites. Kerala Veterinary College and Research Institute Magazine 19–21.

Sundaram, R.K., K. Chandrasekharan & K.M. Pillai (1971). Tetramisole as a anthelmintic against gastro intestinal nematodes of elephants. Kerala Journal of Veterinary sciences 2(1): 55–58.

van der Westhuysen, O.P. (1938). A monograph of the helminth parasites of the elephant. Onder stepoort Journal of Veterinary Science & Animal Industry 10(1): 99–190.

Venu, R., T.T. Singh, R. Veeraharin & R.D. Srilatha (2015). First report of Cobboldia elephantis (Cobbold, 1866) larvae in a free ranging wild elephant from Andhra Pradesh, India. Journal of Parasitic Diseases 39(2): 168–170. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12639-013-0306-5

Vidya, T.N.C. & R. Sukumar (2002).The effect of some ecological factors on the intestinal parasite loads of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) in southern India. Journal of Biosciences 27: 521–528.

Watve, M.G. (1995). Helminth parasites of elephants. Ecological aspects, pp. 289–295. In: Daniel, J.C. & H. Datye (eds.). A Week with Elephants. Oxford University Press, Bombay Natural History Society, New Delhi.

Williams, C., S.K. Tiwari, V.R. Goswami, S. de Silva, A. Kumar, N. Baskaran, K. Yoganand & V. Menon (2020). Elephas maximus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T7140A45818198. Accessed on 19 April 2022. https://doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020-3.RLTS.T7140A45818198.en

Zumpt, F. (1965). Myiasis in Man and Animals in the Old World. London, Butterworth & Co. (Publishers) Ltd., xv+267 pp.