Coypus (Myocastor coypus) are widespread throughout Europe. In northern Italy, they are abundant in the flatland areas, and their high population densities can cause economic loss and ecosystem damage. We examined 153 coypus for selected parasitic and bacterial infections. We found Strongyloides myopotami (63.4% prevalence), Trichostrongylus duretteae (28.1%), Eimeria coypi (86.3%), and Eimeria seideli (6.8%), but did not find Giardia duodenalis or Cryptosporidium spp. We also isolated Staphylococcus aureus (10.1%), Escherichia coli (4.5%), and Streptococcus spp. (3.4%) from lung samples; no Salmonella spp. were isolated from fecal samples. Coypus had antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii (28.9%) and to four serovars of Leptospira interrogans (44.9%); Australis/Bratislava was the serovar most frequently detected. It is clear that coypu can be infected with pathogens of human and veterinary importance.
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Vol. 52 • No. 1