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A cross-sectional study was undertaken with the aim of estimating the prevalence, identifying parasite species and assessing associated risk factors for the occurrence of haemoparasites in indigenous and cross breeds backyard chickens in selected districts of West Gojjam zone, Amhara region, Ethiopia from October 2016- May 2017. A total of 384 blood samples were collected and examined for the presence of haemoparasites using thin blood films. Out of these samples, 71 (18.5 %) of them were infected with haemoparasites. Four species of haemoparasites were identified, namely Aegyptienella spp., Haemoproteus spp., Leucocytozoon spp. and Plasmodium spp.. Highest prevalence of haemoparasite infection was recorded in midland (22.3%) compared to highland (10.9 %) areas with a statistical significant difference (p<0.05) between them. Statistical significance variation (p<0.05%) was observed in haemoparasite infection among districts, with highest prevalence in S/Achefer (27.3%) followed by B/Zuria (17.2 %) and the lowest in Mecha (10.9%) districts. Age and management system of chickens were significantly associated (p<0.05) with haemoparasite infection. While sex and breed did not show significant difference between their counter parts. Based on haematological analysis, red blood cell count and level of hemoglobin was showed a statistical significant (p<0.05) difference between infected and non-infected chickens. The results obtained in this study suggested that haemoparasite infection in chickens is prevalent in the study area. Hence, appropriate control measures should be implemented to solve the existing problem.



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Year: 2017
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