Prevalence of Capillaria plica in Danish wild carnivores

Heidi Huus Petersen*, Stine Thorsø Nielsen, Gitte Larsen, Elisabeth Holm, Mariann Chriél

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Capillaria plica is a parasitic nematode belonging to the family Capillariidae. The adult parasites reside in the urinary tract of wild and domestic canines. The infection is most often asymptomatic, but can cause a wide range of symptoms including urinary bladder inflammation, pollacisuria, dysuria and hematuria. Canines acquire the infection by ingesting the intermediate host, the earthworm (Lumbricidae). Epidemiological studies on C. plica infection in wildlife are few and only one previous Danish study examined the prevalence in red foxes, while studies on prevalence in other animals are limited. We examined the urine sediment or urinary bladder from 375 Raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides), 247 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 20 beech martens (Martes foina), 16 wild mink (Neovison vison), 14 otters (Lutra lutra), nine European polecats (Mustela putorius), three European badgers (Meles meles) and one golden jackal (Canis aureus) received as a part of Danish wildlife surveillance. Capillaria plica was detected in 73.7% of red foxes, 20.0% of beech martens, 0.5% of raccoon dogs, and in the Golden jackal. Red foxes originating from all 5 regions of Denmark were infected, although with a significantly higher prevalence in the three regions in Jutland compared to Region Zealand.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalInternational Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)360-363
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Bibliographical note

    This is an open access article under the CC BY license (


    • Caprillaria plica
    • Bladderworm
    • Wild carnivores
    • Resevoir hosts

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