Main Article Content
A cross sectional study was conducted from June 2016 to August 2017 to identify the widespread of ectoparasites in indigenous chickens and its associated economic significance in randomly selected Local Government Councils and States in Nigeria. A total of 1025 indigenous chickens were examined out of which 90.7% were infested with one or more ectoparasites species. Four types of ectoparasites genera were encountered in this study, 17.0% of the total chickens examined were infested with only one genera while 73.9% were infested with two or more different genera. Among the ectoparasites encountered, lice infestation (85.8%) was the most prevalent followed by mite (70.4%), Flea (27.3%) and tick (6.2%) in descending order of widespread. Ten different species of ectoparasites, namely Menopon gallinae, Lipeurus caponis, Goniodes gigas, Cnemidocoptes mutans, Dermanyssus gallinae, Epidermoptes species, Laminosioptes cysticola, Megninia species, Echidnophaga gallinacean and Argas persicus were identified in the study. Menopon gallinae (50%) was most frequently encountered while Megninia species (2.7%) was least prevalent. The findings of this study showed that ectoparasites infestations were highly prevalent among indigenous chicken flocks, which may likely affect their optimum productivity. Routine prevention and control of ectoparasites should be encouraged in the study areas.
Key Words: Indigenous chickens, ectoparasites, infestations, selected local government councils and states in Nigeria.