Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Relationship between the excretion of eggs of parasitic helminths in roe deer and local livestock density

Abstract : Because of their continuing expansion, wildlife ruminant species that prosper in rural landscapes may be increasingly affected by and/or contribute to the circulation of certain generalist pathogens also infecting domestic ruminants, when they share common spaces or resources. In this study, we aimed to test the hypothesis that parasitism with gastrointestinal nematodes (GINs) of wild roe deer inhabiting different rural landscapes is correlated with livestock density. We used faecal egg counts of GINs and spatial data of 74 GPS-collared roe deer, inhabiting various landscapes from closed forests to open fields, together with weekly records of livestock abundances on pasture. We tested whether the excretion of GIN eggs in roe deer was influenced by the density of livestock in their home range over the grazing season. Our results showed that all of the roe deer home ranges, except four, contained pastures occupied by livestock. Excretion of GIN eggs occurred in 77% of the roe deer. The excretion of GIN eggs in roe deer tended to increase with livestock density in their home range. This result suggests, but does not prove, a higher risk of ingesting GIN larvae originating from livestock dung. In the context of increasing overlap between roe deer and livestock ranges, the exchange of pathogens between both hosts is plausible, although species identity of the parasites present was not determined. Assessing which GIN species are shared between wild and domestic ruminants, and how this may affect the health of both hosts, is a central question for future research in the context of interspecific pathogen circulation.
Complete list of metadata
Contributor : Nathalie Seguin <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, March 24, 2021 - 3:34:49 PM
Last modification on : Friday, June 4, 2021 - 2:40:24 PM




Hélène Verheyden, Céline Richomme, Julie Sevila, Joel Merlet, Bruno Lourtet, et al.. Relationship between the excretion of eggs of parasitic helminths in roe deer and local livestock density. Journal of Helminthology, Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2020, 94, pp.e159. ⟨10.1017/S0022149X20000449⟩. ⟨hal-03179883⟩



Record views