Tsetse challenge, trypanosome and helminth infection in relation to productivity of village Ndama cattle in Senegal

Data on tsetse fly, and on village Ndama cattle collected over a 4-year period in southern Senegal were analysed. A total of 431 Ndama cattle in four herds of three villages in the Upper Casamance area of southern Senegal were monitored monthly. Glossina morsitans submorsitans and Glossina palpalis gambiensis are present in the study area. Mean tsetse apparent density was 5.4 flies/trap/day. Trypanosome (Trypanosoma congolense and Trypanosoma vivax) infection rate in flies was 2.4 (s.e. 0.37) percent. Tsetse challenge index was 17.3 (s.e. 4.18). Mean monthly trypanosome prevalence in cattle was 2.5 (s.e. 0.51) percent. Highest trypansome prevalence occurred during the dry season and animals less than 1-year old were more frequently infected than older animals. The linear relationship between the log10+1 tsetse challenge and the arcsine of the trypanosome prevalence was significant only when mean monthly values of these variables over the 4-year period were used with tsetse challenge preceding infection rate by 3 months. Mean monthly prevalence of strongyle. Strongyloides spp., Toxocara spp. and coccidia were 34.4 (s.e. 0.60), 2.1 (s.e. 0.18), 1.2 (s.e. 0.45) and 15.6 (s.e. 0.47) percent, respectively. Calf mortality rate at 1.6 and 12 months of age was 2.1 (s.e. 2.1), 5.2 (s.e. 2.8) and 12.2 (s.e. 3.3) percent, respectively. Calving interval (584 s.e. 58 days) was not influenced by trypanosome status of the cow during lactation. Calving interval was shorter by 167 days when the calf died before 1 year of age in comparison to calving intervals for which the calf survived beyond one year. Live weight at birth, 6 and 12 months of age were 15.8 (s.e. 0.54), 48.1 (s.e. 2.56) and 71.1 (s.e. 5.44) kg, respectively. Mean lactation length, total and daily milk offtake were 389 (s.e. 16) days, 231 (s.e. 15 litres and 0.69 (s.e. 0.037) litres, respectively. Trypanosome infection during lactation did not have a significant effect on the amount of milk extracted for human consumption nor did trypanosome status affect calf growth.