International Journal of Fauna and Biological Studies

Volume 1, Issue 2

The House Gecko (Hemidactylus frenatus) and Parasitaemia

Author(s): Obi, Zita C1, Anyaegbunam, Lucy C2, Igboanugo Nkiruka A.2
1. Department of Science Education, Anambra State University Uli, Nigeria
2. Department of Biological Sciences, Anambra State University Uli, Nigeria

Abstract: The house geckos (Hemidactylus frenatus) are unique among lizards. They are usually nocturnal and great climbers. They are found within human habitation where they feed on insects, worms and spiders. Like all vertebrates, they are susceptible to parasitism in their niche. This represents a substantial risk to human health. This however, informs this study. A total of 400 wall geckos were caught at night in randomly selected households within the study area in their hiding places. These were put into plastic bucket bottom lined with old newspaper to provide a near similar environment of their hideout, and taken to Biological Science laboratory for parasite examination. In ectoparasite infestation, an overall prevalence of 45.0% was recorded. Species infestation were as follows; Ixodes spp (61.1%), Angasid spp (27.8%), Trombicula spp and unidentified were 5.6% respectively, The sex related ectoparasitosis stood at, male (44.4%), females (50.0%) and juvenile (5.6%). In ectoparasitosis, the overall prevalence was 52.5%. The endoparasite infections were; Parapharyngodon malplestomi (33.3%), Hedyris hanleyae (23.8%), Onchonistica javaensis (23.8%) and unidentified spp (19.1%), while sex related species were males (47.6%), females (52.4%) and juvenile (0.00%). The endoparasites were of the groups, nematodes and cestodes. Geckos are likely zoonotic pathway to human health based on the parasites recovered in the study. Though they may look friendly in habits, but are quiet killers in transmission of pathogens.

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