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Protection of horses against Culicoides biting midges in different housing systems in Switzerland


Lincoln, V J; Page, P C; Kopp, C; Mathis, A; von Niederhäusern, R; Burger, D; Herholz, C (2015). Protection of horses against Culicoides biting midges in different housing systems in Switzerland. Veterinary Parasitology, 210(3-4):206-214.

Abstract

Species belonging to the Culicoides complexes (Diptera, Ceratopogonidae), obsoletus and pulicaris, in Switzerland, are potential vectors of both bluetongue virus (BTV) and African horse sickness virus (AHSV). The epidemic of BTV in 2006 and 2007 in Europe has highlighted the risk of introduction and spread of vector-borne diseases in previously non-endemic areas. As a measure of prevention, as part of an integrated control programme in the event of an outbreak of African horse sickness (AHS), it is of utmost importance to prevent, or substantially reduce, contact between horses and Culicoides. The aim of the present study was to compare the effect of three protection systems, net, fan, repellent, or combinations thereof, with regard to their potential to reduce contact between horses and Culicoides. Three different equine housing systems, including individual boxes (BX), group housing systems (GR), and individual boxes with permanently accessible paddock (BP) were used. The efficacy of the protection systems were evaluated by comparing the total number counts of collected female Culicoides, of non-blood-fed and blood-fed Culicoides, respectively, with UV black light traps. The study was conducted over 3 summer months during 2012 and 2013 each and focused on the efficacy and practicality of the protection systems. The repellent was tested in 2012 only and not further investigated in 2013, as it showed no significant effect in reducing Culicoides collected in the light traps. Net protection system provided the best overall protection for the total number of female Culicoides, non-blood-fed and blood-fed Culicoides in all tested housing systems. The net, with a pore size of 0.1825mm(2), reduced the total number of Culicoides collected in the housing systems BP, GR and BX by 98%, 85% and 67%, respectively. However, in the GR housing system, no significant difference between the effectiveness of the fan and the net were determined for any of the three Culicoides categories. The results of the present study demonstrated that horse owners can substantially reduce their horses' exposure to Culicoides, by using net protection in the housing systems BX, BP and GR. In GR housing systems, protection against Culicoides using a fan is also recommended.

Abstract

Species belonging to the Culicoides complexes (Diptera, Ceratopogonidae), obsoletus and pulicaris, in Switzerland, are potential vectors of both bluetongue virus (BTV) and African horse sickness virus (AHSV). The epidemic of BTV in 2006 and 2007 in Europe has highlighted the risk of introduction and spread of vector-borne diseases in previously non-endemic areas. As a measure of prevention, as part of an integrated control programme in the event of an outbreak of African horse sickness (AHS), it is of utmost importance to prevent, or substantially reduce, contact between horses and Culicoides. The aim of the present study was to compare the effect of three protection systems, net, fan, repellent, or combinations thereof, with regard to their potential to reduce contact between horses and Culicoides. Three different equine housing systems, including individual boxes (BX), group housing systems (GR), and individual boxes with permanently accessible paddock (BP) were used. The efficacy of the protection systems were evaluated by comparing the total number counts of collected female Culicoides, of non-blood-fed and blood-fed Culicoides, respectively, with UV black light traps. The study was conducted over 3 summer months during 2012 and 2013 each and focused on the efficacy and practicality of the protection systems. The repellent was tested in 2012 only and not further investigated in 2013, as it showed no significant effect in reducing Culicoides collected in the light traps. Net protection system provided the best overall protection for the total number of female Culicoides, non-blood-fed and blood-fed Culicoides in all tested housing systems. The net, with a pore size of 0.1825mm(2), reduced the total number of Culicoides collected in the housing systems BP, GR and BX by 98%, 85% and 67%, respectively. However, in the GR housing system, no significant difference between the effectiveness of the fan and the net were determined for any of the three Culicoides categories. The results of the present study demonstrated that horse owners can substantially reduce their horses' exposure to Culicoides, by using net protection in the housing systems BX, BP and GR. In GR housing systems, protection against Culicoides using a fan is also recommended.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Institute of Parasitology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Parasitology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
600 Technology
Uncontrolled Keywords:African horse sickness; Fan; Net; Repellent; Vector protection
Language:English
Date:15 June 2015
Deposited On:16 Jul 2015 14:26
Last Modified:27 Jan 2017 08:07
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0304-4017
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2015.04.006
PubMed ID:25935291

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