New Delhi, 05 September2019 : A new study by CSIR’s Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) has emphasised the need to avoid changes in land use patterns near forest areas to prevent transmission of parasites and infections between human settlements and wildlife.
landscape changes such as land use change and fragmentation of habitat are
known to alter the diversity of wildlife. These changes are also likely to
change the diversity of parasites in the wildlife with implication for their
health, since host and parasite diversity are strongly connected. However,
research on the subject is limited. The effects of land use change and habitat
fragmentation often co-occur but may affect the parasite diversity
the new study, the researchers assessed how land use changes such as plantation,
livestock foraging and human settlement and habitat fragmentation could impact the
diversity of gastro-intestinal parasites in wild mammalian host species in Annamalai
Hills in the Western Ghats.
researchers extracted and analysed parasite eggs from about 4,000 faecal
specimens of 23 wildlife species in 19 forest fragments of the Western Ghats
over two years. It was found that the
presence of plantations and potentially livestock significantly increased
parasite diversity in the wildlife. However, the effect of habitat
fragmentation was not significant.
found many parasites of cattle and human origin. The presence of plantations
and potentially livestock significantly increased the parasite diversity due to
possible spillover. We found more parasite species in wildlife nearer human
settlement. Disturbed forest had more parasites than the non-disturbed ones,”
explained Dr. Govindhaswamy Umapathy, who led the study, while speaking to India
study, he said, shows that cattle and domestic animals should be periodically
de-wormed and completely restricted from roaming and interacting in wildlife
research team also included Debapriya Chakraborty, Mahendra Reddy
and Sunil Tiwari. The results have been published in journal Scientific
By Umashankar Mishra
(India Science Wire)
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