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Acta Parasitologica, Vol.47, No. 1, 2002, 51-57
Gryczynska Alicja (1)*, Barkowska Miloslawa (1), Siemiatkowski Marek (2) - Analysis of Ixodes ricinus (L.) tick burdens in a resident passerine bird community in the Mazurian Lake region (Northeastern Poland).

(1) Department of Ecology, Institute of Zoology, University of Warsaw, Banacha 2, 02-097 Warszawa; (2) Department of Pharmacology and Physiology of the Nervous System, Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, Sobieskiego 1/9, 02-957 Warszawa; Poland
*Corresponding author:

The abundance of birds and their tick parasites were estimated in a residential avian community located in the Mazurian Lake region (NE Poland). A total of 1624 passerine birds (representing 45 species) were captured, of which 25% were infested with at least one tick. All the ticks belonged to the species Ixodes ricinus. The highest tick infestation prevalence (>50%) were recorded for dunnock (Prunella modularis), tree pipit (Anthus trivialis), hawfinch (Coccothraustes coccothraustes) and blackbird (Turdus merula). Changes in tick infestation prevalence of passerine birds are seasonal. June and September were the two months in which tick infestation rates were the highest. The percentage of birds that were tick carriers was significantly greater in mixed coniferous forest than in alder swamp forest (respectively 32% and 20% of birds were infested with ticks).

KEY WORDS: Ixodes ricinus, passerine birds
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