Four species of nematodes (Gongylonema pulchrum, Parabronema pecariae, Texi-cospirura turki, and Physocephalus sexalatus) and one species of cestode (Moniezia sp.) comprised the helminth fauna of adult collared peccaries (Tayassu tajacu) from the plains in southern Texas. The community structure of the helminth fauna of peccaries from this region was basically dissimilar to that from the more humid Gulf coastal prairies of southern Texas in (1) composition (by the conspicuous absence of certain species) and (2) relative abundance of shared species. The distributions of each of the three common species of helminths (G. pulchrum, T. turki, and P. sexalatus) were overdispersed. The effects of selected habitat variables operating across host subpopulations (delineated by condition and sex) and of the extrinsic variable of season on the dispersion patterns of the three common species of helminths were examined. The hypothesis that heterogeneity within the host population, rather than across the collective host population, is the main factor generating overdispersion in natural parasite populations was not confirmed for the three common species of helminths. Overdispersion in P. sexalatus resulted from seasonal changes across the collective host population, with the greatest abundances occurring during the cool season. Aggregated abundances of G. pulchrum resulted from variation generated across host sex subpopulations, while the dispersion patterns of T. turki appeared to be unaffected by the habitat variables examined in this study.
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