Larval nematodes with a dorsal spine on the tail were recovered from fecal samples of California bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis californiana) in northeastern Washington State, USA. The identity of these dorsal-spined larvae (DSL) was established by single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) analyses of a partial fragment of the first internal transcribed spacer of the ribosomal DNA. The SSCP profiles of individual DSL from bighorn sheep were compared with those of DSL of five protostrongylid species (Parelaphostrongylus andersoni, P odocoilei, P. tenuis, Elaphostrongylus rangiferi, and Muellerius capillaris) but were identical to only those of P. odocoilei. This study represents the first confirmed identification of P. odocoilei in bighorn sheep.
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Vol. 42 • No. 4