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Chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Amblycera and Ischnocera) infesting woodpeckers and sapsuckers (Aves: Piciformes: Picidae) in Manitoba, Canada

  • Terry D. Galloway (a1) and Robert J. Lamb (a1)


Five species of woodpeckers (Piciformes: Picidae) in Manitoba, Canada were examined for chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Amblycera and Ischnocera): downy woodpecker (DOWO) (Picoides pubescens (Linnaeus), n=56), hairy woodpecker (HAWO) (Picoides villosus (Linnaeus), n=32), pileated woodpecker (PIWO) (Dryocopus pileatus (Linnaeus), n=12), northern flicker (NOFL) (Colaptes auratus (Linnaeus), n=223), and yellow-bellied sapsucker (YBSA) (Sphyrapicus varius (Linnaeus), n=192). Seven species of lice were collected (total number=40 613): Menacanthus pici (Denny) from all species of woodpeckers, Brueelia straminea (Denny) from both species of Picoides Lacépède, Penenirmus jungens (Kellogg) from northern flicker, Penenirmus auritus (Scopoli) from all species of woodpeckers examined except northern flickers, Picicola porisma Dalgleish from northern flickers, Picicola snodgrassi (Kellogg) from both species of Picoides, and Picicola marginatulus (Harrison) from pileated woodpeckers. Prevalence for total louse infestation ranged from 32.3% to 85.7% (NOFL>YBSA>PIWO>DOWO>HAWO). Mean intensity for total lice ranged from 29.2 to 232.4 (PIWO>NOFL>HAWO>YBSA>DOWO). Infestation parameters for each louse/host combination are provided. Distribution of louse infestations was highly aggregated. In all louse/host combinations, either females were more prevalent than males or there was no significant deviation from 50:50. There was a tendency for louse species to co-occur on the same host specimen.


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