Bovine coccidiosis is a disease of major importance in cattle herds across the world. The disorder mainly affects young calves, and E. bovis and E. zuernii are considered the most pathogenic species of the genus, however, E. alabamensis have been described in grazing calves. In this study, the prevalence of Eimeria spp. was evaluated in calves on dairy farms in the northern region of the state of Paraná, Brazil. Four hundred calves on 44 dairy farms were tested for the presence of coccidian oocysts. The positives were re-examined and the oocysts were morphometrically analyzed for species identification. All the farms were contaminated and 205 animals (51.25%) presented Eimeria spp. oocysts. Among these, 146 animals (71.22%) were co-infected by two or more species of coccidia. Ten species of Eimeria were identified: E. bovis (in 30.25% of the positive samples), E. alabamensis (26.75%), E. zuernii (22.00%), E. ellipsoidalis (18.50%), E. auburnensis (13.75%), E. canadensis (8.00%), E. cylindrica (7.25%), E. subspherica (5.00%), E. bukidnonensis (3.00%) and E. brasiliensis (0.75%). This study demonstrates the high prevalence of Eimeria spp. in the northern region of Paraná, Brazil, and detection for the first time in our region the pathogenic species E. alabamensis.
Coccidiosis; bovine; epidemiology; morphometric; oocysts