University of Oulu

Kynkäänniemi, S.-M., Kortet, R., Härkönen, L., Kaitala, A., Paakkonen, T., Mustonen, A.-M., Nieminen, P., Härkönen, S., Ylönen, H., & Laaksonen, S. (2010). Threat of An Invasive Parasitic Fly, the Deer Ked (Lipoptena cervi), to the Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus Tarandus): Experimental Infection and Treatment. Annales Zoologici Fennici, 47(1), 28–36.

Threat of an invasive parasitic fly, the deer ked (Lipoptena cervi), to the reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus) : experimental infection and treatment

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Author: Kynkäänniemi, Sanna-Mari1; Kortet, Raine1,2; Härkönen, Laura1;
Organizations: 1Department of Biology, P.O. Box 3000, FI-90014 University of Oulu, Finland
2Faculty of Biosciences, University of Joensuu, P.O. Box 111, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland
3Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, P.O. Box 5000, FI-90014 University of Oulu, Finland
4Finnish Forest Research Institute, Joensuu Research Unit, P.O. Box 68, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland
5Department of Biological and Environmental Science, Konnevesi Research Station, P.O. Box 35, FI-40014 University of Jyväskylä, Finland
6Finnish Food Safety Authority EVIRA, Fish and Wildlife Health Research Unit, P.O. Box 517, FI-90101 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.1 MB)
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Language: English
Published: BioOne (Finnish Zoological and Botanical Publishing Board), 2010
Publish Date: 2020-05-05


Range expansion of ectoparasites can cause parasites to attack new host species. In these cases it is important for the parasite to be able to adapt to the new environment and to reproduce on the host. For the host, it is crucial to hinder successfully the development of long-lasting parasitic relationship. The deer ked (Lipoptena cervi) is a novel ectoparasite for northern cervids. We investigated if the deer ked can use the reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) as a host and, if it can, whether antiparasitic treatment against this parasite would be available. Three groups of reindeer were monitored: two groups of 6 reindeer were infected with 300 flies per each individual; a control group comprised 6 animals. One of the infected groups was treated with subcutaneous ivermectin. At the end of the experiment the infestation rate of the infected animals was low. The reindeer in the non-treated group had both live and dead deer keds and also a single pupa while the ivermectin-treated reindeer had only dead deer keds. As some deer keds survived and reproduced, the deer ked can potentially use the reindeer as a host but antiparasitic treatment may be effective against this parasite.

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Series: Annales zoologici Fennici
ISSN: 0003-455X
ISSN-E: 1797-2450
ISSN-L: 0003-455X
Volume: 47
Issue: 1
Pages: 28 - 36
DOI: 10.5735/086.047.0103
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
1183 Plant biology, microbiology, virology
1172 Environmental sciences
1184 Genetics, developmental biology, physiology
Funding: We thank the University of Oulu, Vetcare Oy and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (Makera) for financial support.
Copyright information: © Finnish Zoological and Botanical Publishing Board 2010.