Cryptosporidium in eastern grey kangaroos Macropus giganteus

M. L. Power*, M. B. Slade, S. R. Shanker, N. C. Sangster, D. A. Veal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter illustrates the first epidemiological investigation of Cryptosporidium in a wild marsupial population. The molecular epidemiology of Cryptosporidium in marsupial hosts is not well comprehended. Molecular characterization of Cryptosporidium in marsupials consists of the identification of the Cryptosporidium parvum "marsupial" genotype in a koala, a red kangaroo, and in captive yellow-footed rock wallabies. The eastern grey kangaroo is one of Australia's largest and most abundant species of kangaroo. With its distribution confined to Eastern Australia, the population density in New South Wales alone during the year 2000 was estimated to be 3.7 million. The presence of eastern grey kangaroos in water catchment areas and their likely contribution of fecal contamination to riparian zones highlight the importance of understanding the epidemiology of Cryptosporidium in this host. This study demonstrates that Cryptosporidium is present within this eastern grey kangaroo population all year and that prevalence varies with season, peaking during late summer to early autumn. The numbers of oocysts shed ranges from 10 to 2 X 107 oocysts/g feces with the majority of animals shedding < 1000 oocysts/g feces.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCryptosporidium
Subtitle of host publicationFrom molecules to disease
EditorsR.C. Andrew Thompson, Anthony Armson, Una M. Ryan
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
Number of pages3
ISBN (Electronic)9780080530109
ISBN (Print)9780444513519, 0444513515
Publication statusPublished - 17 Dec 2003

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    Power, M. L., Slade, M. B., Shanker, S. R., Sangster, N. C., & Veal, D. A. (2003). Cryptosporidium in eastern grey kangaroos Macropus giganteus. In R. C. A. Thompson, A. Armson, & U. M. Ryan (Eds.), Cryptosporidium: From molecules to disease (pp. 207-209). Amsterdam: Elsevier.