Lesser snow goose (Chen caerulescens caerulescens) goslings, approximately 5 weeks of age, were collected near the month of Tha-anne River, Northwest Territories, Canada, during mid-August 1991. Many dead goslings had been observed in the area from 1988 to 1990. Goslings from near the coast, where habitat degradation by grazing geese was severe, were smaller, weighed less, and had a greater prevalence of renal coccidiosis (Eimeria truncata) and cecal nematode (Trichostrongylus spp.) infection than did goslings from inland areas, where habitat destruction was not evident. Prevalence of infection with intestinal cestodes was greater at inland than at coastal sites. Prevalences of gizzard nematodes (Epomidiostomum spp.) and Leucocytozoon spp. were not significantly different at the two sites. Histological examination of kidneys and examination of kidney homogenates for oocysts were more sensitive methods than gross examination of the kidneys for detecting renal coccidial infection. The number of oocysts present in droppings was not a good indicator of the severity of renal coccidial infection in individual birds; however, the average number of oocysts in droppings was indicative of the average severity of infection among groups of goslings.
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Vol. 32 • No. 3