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Culturing of nematode parasites

drh92 at aber.ac.uk drh92 at aber.ac.uk
Thu Feb 24 16:05:16 EST 1994

I am a PhD student working at U.C.W. at Aberystwyth, and part of my research will involve
 the avian parasite Syngamus trachea. The problem is not so much the work on the parasite;
which is fairly standard chemical search techniques, but the finding of a suitable host for
this parasite.

 A previous worker I know had similar problems; she found that the only wild
hosts available were corvids, which, since young parasites were needed, had to be caught
early in the year. Corvids are intelligent as birds go, which makes catching the birds somewhat

One solution which was tried was to culture the parasites in young pheasants, which worked
O.K. as long as you kept the birds in solitary confinement. If you didn't, you had cannibalism
problems, which is bad for your experiments, and bad for the university as well.

So, my question is; before I start this work, does anyone have any reasonable advice
on how to get around these problems? (Needless to say, threats, flames etc are unwelcome.)


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