Differences between chimpanzee and baboon gastrointestinal parasite communities

M. A. Ebbert*, W. C. McGrew, L. F. Marchant

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Cross-species infection among humans, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and baboons (Papio spp.) is potentially a significant public health issue in Africa, and of concern in the conservation of P. troglodytes. However, to date, no statistical comparisons have been made between the prevalence, richness and composition of parasite communities in sympatric populations of baboons and P. troglodytes. We compared parasite communities in sympatric P. troglodytes and Papio papio living in a wilderness site, in the Republic of Senegal, West Africa. We asked whether, in the absence of humans, there are significant differences between these hosts in their interactions with gastrointestinal parasites. We tested whether host, location, or time of collection accounted for variation in prevalence, richness and community composition, and compared prevalence across six studies. We concluded that, despite being closely related, there are significant differences between these two hosts with respect to their parasite communities. At our study site, prevalence of Balantidium, Trichuris and Watsonius was higher in P. papio. Papio papio harboured more parasites per host, and we found evidence of a positive association between Trichuris and Balantidium in P. troglodytes but not P. papio.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)958-967
Number of pages10
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2015


  • biodiversity
  • community composition
  • cross infection
  • helminths
  • mixed infections
  • Pan troglodytes
  • Papio papio
  • prevalence
  • richness


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