1Conservation Medicine PhD Program, Andres Bello University, Santiago, Chile; 2Veterinary Medicine Program, Francisco de Miranda University, El Hatillo, Coro, Falcon, Venezuela
The occurrence and distribution of parasitic diseases in captive wild mammals in four Venezuelan zoos were studied from 1998–2002. Rates and percentages of morbidity and mortality were calculated using a retrospective analysis of zoo archive data. Bararida was the zoo with the highest index of mortality (4.60%). Primates (66.70%) suffered the highest proportion of deaths. The most frequent genera of parasites were Strongyloides sp. (nematodes), Hymenolepis sp. (cestodes), Platynosomum sp. (trematodes), and Trichomonas sp. (protozoa). Primates, rodents, and hoofed animals were parasitized mostly by Trichomonas sp., whereas carnivores and edentates were parasitized mostly by Strongyloides sp. Platynosomum sp. represented a new discovery as a cause of death for primates in captivity.