Warbler species of the families Sylviidae and Acrocephalidae occurring in the Danube river delta are frequently exposed to blood-sucking arthropods that transmit avian blood parasites. We investigated infections by three genera of hemosporidian parasites in blood samples from six warbler species. Altogether in 17 (32.6%) of 52 blood samples, a PCR product was amplified. The great reed warbler (Acrocephalus arundinaceus) had the highest prevalence, with 63.6% (7/11) infected individuals, whereas no infection was detected in marsh warbler (Acrocephalus palustris). The most common parasite genus was Haemoproteus, which was found in 15.4% (8/52) of individuals. Seven known parasite lineages (five Haemoproteus and two Plasmodium) and two new lineages were recorded (one Leucocytozoon and one Plasmodium).
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Vol. 53 • No. 4