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Intestinal parasites of raccoons (Procyon lotor) from southwest British Columbia

Ching, H. L., Leighton, B. J., Stephen, C.
Canadian journal of veterinary research 2000 v.64 no.2 pp. 107-111
Acanthocephala, Baylisascaris procyonis, Cestoda, Procyon lotor, Trematoda, automobiles, coasts, eggs, humans, intestines, larva migrans, new host records, parasites, people, pollution, surveys, veterinary medicine, water birds, wildlife rehabilitation, British Columbia
This is the first extensive survey of metazoan parasites (particularly of the roundworm Baylisascaris procyonis) from the intestines of raccoons in British Columbia. The sample collected in 1997-1998 consisted of 82 raccoons that had been sick or had been killed accidentally by automobiles. Fifteen parasite taxa were found: 3 nematodes, 9 digenetic trematodes, 2 acanthocephalans and 1 cestode. Ten of these parasites constitute new host records for raccoons, including 4 digenetic trematodes that have been reported in marine birds and mammals on the Pacific Coast of North America. Baylisascaris procyonis infected 61% of the raccoons with a mean intensity of 27. The high rate of infection indicates a large potential for environmental contamination and, thus, human and animal exposure to infectious eggs. Prevention of larva migrans is discussed, particularly for people in contact with raccoons in wildlife rehabilitation centers.