Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Alternative Title

Pizotes (Nasua narica) como hospederos del endoparásito, Giardia lamblia


Megan Sha



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Publication Date

December 2016


Giardiasis, the disease caused by the protozoan endoparasite, Giardia lamblia, has become an increasingly concerning threat to both animals and humans, especially for travelers in the form of “travelers’ diarrhea” and in developing countries such as Costa Rica. Parasitic infections are an omnipresent problem that are often a result of zoonotic diseases, or diseases that are transmitted from animal to human. This study strove to determine if white-nosed coatis (Nasua narica) could potentially be hosts to Giardia lamblia in Monteverde, similar to how they are capable of acting as hosts for other zoonoses. I collected 28 coati fecal samples at three locations within Monteverde, Costa Rica, and found five samples positive for Giardia lamblia. Not only did this demonstrate that Nasua narica could act as hosts for the endoparasite, but the individuals surveyed were also hosts to 19 other parasitic species ranging from roundworms to tapeworms. Such parasitic incidences depended on the locations in which the samples were found, along with hosts’ interactions with possible sources of contamination in the particular environment; the latter could have resulted from contact with infested water and/or food, or through fecal-oral routes. Close human proximity to coatis can pose a danger to human health and increase our risks for contracting the disease, while jeopardizing the health of coatis and neighboring wildlife, as well.


Giardiasis, la enfermedad causada por el protozoario parásito Giardia lamblia, se ha convertido en una amenaza creciente tanto para animales como para humanos. Las infecciones por parásitos son un problema omnipresente que a menudo resultan en zoonosis, enfermedades transmitidas de animales a humanos. Este estudio evaluó si los pizotes (Nasua narica) son huéspedes potenciales de Giardia lamblia en Monteverde, así como de otras zoonosis. Recolecté 28 muestras fecales de pizotes en tres sitios en Monteverde, Costa Rica, y encontré cinco muestras positivas para Giardia lamblia. No solo esto demuestra que Nasua narica actúa como huésped del endoparásito, sino que también de otras 19 especies que van desde gusanos redondos a planos, resultados de sus interacciones con otros huéspedes, fuentes de agua o de comida expuestas a contaminación fecal. La cercanía a los humanos y por ser animales silvestres hacen de los pizotes un factor de riesgo a la salud humana y la de otros animales también.


Giardiasis, Zoonoses, Host-parasite relationships, Relaciones parásito-hospedador, EAP Fall 2016, EAP Otoño 2016

Palabras claves

EAP Otoño 2016


21 pages

Geographic Location

Monteverde (Puntarenas, Costa Rica)

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute


English; Spanish

Media Type



Digital Only





White-nosed Coatis (Nasua narica) as hosts for the endoparasite, Giardia lamblia



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