Diversity of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Conoidasida: Eucoccidiorida: Eimeriidae) in Broiler Chickens of Purulia District, West Bengal, India
Keywords:Oocyst, Eimeria, Sporocyst, Poultry, Prevalence
Eimeria is one of the most important pathogenic parasites in broiler chickens that causes huge economic loss in poultry birds throughout the world including the Purulia district of West Bengal. To study the prevalence of coccidiosis in the broiler chickens of the district, coprological studies were carried out from February 2022 to January 2023. Faecal samples were collected from different poultry farms of the district and examined by the Floatation method (Sheather’s solution) followed by microscopic examination of coccidian oocyst and sporocyst. Species were identified by morphometric Eimeria is one of the most important pathogenic parasites in broiler chickens that causes huge economic loss in poultry birds throughout the world analysis and standard literature. Out of 254 samples examined, 169 samples were found positive for coccidian species, i.e. the prevalence of coccidiosis in broiler chickens of the Purulia district was 66.53%. Altogether six species of Eimeria were recorded of which Eimeria tenella was the most prevalent species (40.55%, 103/254), followed by Eimeria necatrix (12.20%, 31/254), Eimeria maxima (5.51%,14/254), Eimeria mitis (3.54%, 09/254), Eimeria acervulina (2.75%, 7/254) and Eimeria brunetti (1.96%, 5/254). The most common type of mixed infection was found in combination with E. tenella, E. maxima and E. necatrix (33.85%, 86/254), followed by E. tenella, E. maxima (25.19%, 64/254). Interestingly, in most cases, E. tenella, E. mxima and E. necatrix were coexisting in various combinations. E. tenella, E. mxima and E. necatrix were coexist in 33.85%, (86/254) cases, E. tenella and E. necatrix in 25.19% cases (64/254) and E. tenella and E. maxima in 15.35% cases (39/254). The present study also revealed that the infection was more prevalent in the rainy season (91.78%) and less in the summer (31.81%). The present communication intends to conclude that coccidiosis is still a major threat to poor poultry bird keepers of the district.