Parasitic Alien Terrestrial Arthropods on Small Mammals in Northeast and South Bulgaria

1 University of Forestry, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, BG - 1474 Sofia, Bulgaria
2 Konstantin Preslavski University of Shumen, BG - 9700 Shumen, Bulgaria


KANCHEV, K., Y. KAMENOV, I. ATANASSOVA, R. DAVIDOVA and R. TOMOV, 2012. Parasitic alien terrestrial arthropods on small mammals in Northeast and South Bulgaria. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 18: 965-970

Small mammals (Micromammalia) are the most widespread wild vertebrates in a number of natural biotopes in Northeast and South Bulgaria.
The arachnids of the superorder Parasitiformes (syn. Gamazoidea) are among the most frequently encountered ectoparasites on them, representatives of the metastigmal (order Ixodida) and mesostigmal (order Mesostigmata) mites.
A number of small mammals (Micromammalia) of 10 animal species were captured and examined for the presence of ectoparasites: Crocidura leucodon (bicoloured white-toothed shrew), Apodemus sylvaticus (wood mouse), Apodemus agrarius(striped field mouse), Apodemus flavicollis (yellow-necked field mouse), Microtus arvalis (common vole), Microtus subterraneus(common pine vole), Mus musculus musculus (house mouse), Rattus rattus (black rat), Arvicola terrestris (European water vole) and Dryomys nitedula (forest dormouse).
The mammals were captured in specially selected border and intensive traffic regions in Northeast and South Bulgaria near 12 residential areas.
Ten species of parasite arthropods were found and identified. Of them, 6 species were mites (Acari) in different stages of development. The following species belonged to order Mesostigmata: Ornithonyssus bacoti (Hirst) and Laelaps echidninus(Berlese) and to order Ixodida, family Ixodidae: Ixodes ricinus (Linnaeus), Hyalomma plumbeum (Panzer), Dermacentormarginatus (Sulzer) and Boophilus calcaratus (Olenev). The remaining 4 species were insects (Insecta), of which 3 species were fleas (Siphonaptera): Ctenocephalides canis (Curtis), Pulex irritans (Lineus) and Leptopsilla segnis (Schonher) and one species was louse (Anoplura): Polyplax spinulosa (Burmeister).
Two of the identified species of parasite arthropods had not been reported in our country so far, probably imported from other countries (alien species). These were the mite Laelaps echidninus (Berlese, 1887) and the louse Polyplax spinulosa(Burmeister, 1839).

Key words: alien species, parasitic arthropods (Arthropoda), small mammals (Micromammalia)

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