Encroachment of Echinococcus granulosus into urban areas in eastern Queensland, Australia

David Jenkins, Lee Allen, Mark Goullet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Objective To investigate the prevalence of Echinococcus granulosus in wild dogs (dingos and dingo'domestic dog hybrids) living in and around human habitation on Fraser Island and in townships of the Maroochy Shire, on Queensland's Sunshine Coast, Australia. Design Wild dogs were humanely killed on Fraser Island and in the Maroochy Shire because they were deemed a potential danger to the public. Their intestines were collected and the contents examined for intestinal parasites. Procedure Intestines were removed as soon after death as possible, packed in plastic bags and kept frozen until examination. The intestinal contents were washed, sieved and examined microscopically for the presence of helminths, which were identified and counted. Results Intestines from 108 wild dogs, 7 foxes and 18 Fraser Island dingoes were examined. Echinococcus granulosus was only present in the wild dogs from Maroochy Shire (46.3%) with worm burdens of between 30 and 104,000. Other helminths included Spirometra erinacei, Dipylidium caninum, Taenia spp., Ancylostoma caninum and Toxocara canis. Two specimens of a trematode (Haplorchinae sp.) usually found infecting fish and seabirds were recovered from a Fraser Island dingo. Conclusion Dingoes on Fraser Island are not infected with E. granulosus and do not pose a hydatid disease public health risk to residents or visitors. However, wild dogs examined from the Maroochy Shire do present a potential hydatid disease public health risk.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)294-300
Number of pages7
JournalAustralian Veterinary Journal
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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