Various species of freshwater snails act as intermediate hosts for Schistosoma species. The Bulinus and Biomphalaria snails serve as intermediate hosts for Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni, which are the causative agents of urinary and intestinal schistosomiasis in humans, respectively. This study aims to determine the distribution and abundance of these snail intermediate hosts along Kwanar Areh Dam, Rimi Local Government Area of Katsina State, Nigeria. Three different sites were selected at Kwanar Areh dam for snail sampling. Snails were collected on monthly basis, for nine consecutive months, using scoop net technique and modified manual hand picking, and were identified using their morphological characteristics. 808 snails were collected from the three sites; 259 (32.1%), 360 (44.6%) and 189 (23.4%) snails were collected from sites A, B and C, respectively. The snails were more abundant during early rainy season and site B significantly produced the overall highest number of snails (2= 82.406; P<0.05). From the collected snails, only one species, Bulinus globosus is known from the literature as an intermediate host in the transmission of schistosomiasis. No Biomphalaria snail was sampled in the area. Other freshwater snails identified include Melanoides tuberculata and Gabiella tchadiensis. This study revealed the presence of a species of freshwater snail that is known to serve as intermediate host in transmission of urinary schistosomiasis in the study area. More effort is needed to control the snails’ population through the use of recommended molluscicides and bioremediation. Public enlightenment and health education on the risk factors and possible transmission of schistosomiasis is recommended for the Dam.
Key words: Freshwater snails, intermediate hosts, schistosomiasis, Kwanar Areh Dam, Katsina, Nigeria.
Copyright © 2020 Author(s) retain the copyright of this article.
This article is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0