10. Incidence of chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Insecta) on common pea fowls (Aves: Galliformes) from district Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan

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Farheen Shaikh, Saima Naz, Nadir Ali Birmani


The chewing lice (Insecta: Phthiraptera) are dorsoventrally flattened and wingless insects. The lice have strong mandibles for biting tissue debris and body feathers of their hosts. They have high capability to develop host specificity and cause acute to chronic effects on fitness of their hosts. They are responsible for numerous illnesses and also play a role as vector of some bacteria and helminthic worms. Presently, one type of large sized galliform bird, Common pea fowl Pavocristatus was selected for collection, identification, population density and rate of infestation of the parasitic insects, chewing lice from urban and rural areas of district Hyderabad Sindh, Pakistan. 20 Common pea fowl Pavocristatus were collected for chewing lice. The study was conducted from December 2016 to October 2017. Common pea fowls were kept on white paper sheet for about 30 minutes and sprayed through coopex powder (Permathrin) in their wings. The infested birds were tagged with identity rings to check their lice population after interval of 2 to 3 weeks. The collected lice were preserved in 75% ethanol. The permanent microscopic slides were prepared with canada balsam through standard method of preservation. Presently total 150 chewing lice specimens were recovered which belongs to 04 genera of 02 families. These species and their prevalence are 33.33% for Colpocephalum tausi (Nitzsch, 1818) 24.01% for Menacanthus stramineus (Nitzsh, 1818), and 14.01% for Menacanthus pallidulus(Neumann, 1912) belongs to family Menoponidae 18.01% Goniodes dissimilis, Denny, 1842 and 10.67% for Lipeurus tropicalis, Peters, 1931 belongs to family Philopteridae. All these five species were reported first time as new host and new locality record from the study area. The result of present study revealed that one of a cause of reduced production of eggs, meat and feathers in poultry birds is the presence of chewing lice on their body which causes weakness, sickness, lethargicness and fatalness in game birds.  All lice species were studied and described comprehensively.

Keywords: Common pea fowl; Ectoparasites; Hyderabad; Menoponidae; Philopteridae; Population density


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