Meningeal Worm of Sheep, Llama, etc

Omar O. Barriga barriga.2 at osu.edu
Thu Oct 2 22:23:19 EST 1997


Dear Dan:
	Why don't you try the following Internet address:
http://www.llamapaedia.com/problems/meningeal.html?
It gives a lot of information about the meningeal worm or ruminants.
	If you look in books again, try the spelling Parelaphostongylus, 
Odocoileostongylus, Pneumostrongylus, and Elaphostrongylus. All these are 
considered as synomyms for the genus of your worm.
	The "normal" intermediate host of P. tenuis is believed to be snails or slugs.
Other worms of the same family, however (e.g, Aelurostrongylus of cats) can 
use transport hosts. I wonder if P. tenuis can also use small transport hosts
(e.g., small amphibia or reptiles) that can travel some distance and be eaten 
inadvertedly by ruminants with the grass.  
	Please share your findings, we are interested.
		Good luck
				Omar O. Barriga

. . . 
>(Paralaphostrongylus tenius).  The parasite is in our geographic area, as
>we have a heavy population of white-tailed deer, which is a host.  However,
>I understand that to obtain the worm, the llama would have had to ingest a
>snail that contained infective larvae.  Our pasture's soil is pure sand,
>almost like beach sand, and our soil is so well drained that we have never
>had a puddle on our property.  We are avid naturalists and have documented
>scores of bird species, over 20 mammals, endangered reptiles, insects that
>were previously unlisted in our area, etc.  But we have never seen, nor
>would we expect to see, a snail.

>My questions:  What is the intermediate host of meningeal worm? Where is
>one likely to find it (habitat description)? I have scoured the
>parasitology texts in the University of Wisconsin's ag library and can't
>even find the worm mentioned, let alone its ecology.  When I bring up our
>land's characteristics, local vets just say the worm is in the area, but
>won't comment on how it could occur in such a spot as ours.  Local
>shepherds, on the other hand, can't believe it would be the worm because
>the land should not be good snail habitat.

>We are treating for the worm anyway, since other possibilities such as
>tumor could not be cured; thus, we have not done a spinal tap to check for
>the worms themselves.

>Any information, and as soon as possible, would be appreciated.
>Dan Wixted 



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