P.V. Tavares; M.C.S.N. Botelho; T.R. Correia; F.A. Ribeiro; V.P.C. Vieira; L. Grisi; K. Coumendouros; F.B. Scott
Departamento de Parasitologia Animal do Instituto de Veterinária da Universidade Federal Rural do Rio de Janeiro
The objective of the present study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of mebendazole administered in the drinking water on the control of helminthosis in pigeons (Columba livia). Twenty naturally parasitized birds were divided in two groups of ten (treated and control). Parasitism was confirmed by observing eggs through fecal examination (centrifugal-flotation in saturated sucrose solution) on days -3, -2 and -1 before treatment. Birds were treated with a commercial formulation containing 5% mebendazole (Avitrin Vermifugo® Coveli) in a dilution of 5 drops/50mL of water, creating a final concentration of 0.02%. Birds were able to drink this solution per three consecutive days. Each bird was located in proper individual cages during the experimentation. Fecal examinations were performed 7 days post-treatment and thus, the birds were euthanized and necropsied. Intestinal contents were collected and fixed in 5% formalin-acetic acid solution. Birds were also evaluated for clinical parameters in a scale from 1 (normal) to 4 (highly affected): behavior, appetite, ocular mucosa, respiration, and presence of blood on feathers or feces. The results of fecal examinations indicated that all birds were parasitized per at least one helminth species. Evaluation of intestinal content of control birds found Ascaridia columbae, Capillaria sp. and Raillietina sp. specimens. One bird from the treated group remained parasitized solely by Capillaria sp. Therefore, mebendazole when administered in a 0.02% dilution in the drinking water have demonstrated 100, 99 and 100% efficacy for Ascaridia columbae, Capillaria sp and Raillietina sp., respectively, in naturally infected pigeons. No adverse symptoms were observed.