Parasites in ungulates of Arctic North America and Greenland: a view of contemporary diversity, ecology, and impact in a world under change

Adv Parasitol. 2012:79:99-252. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-398457-9.00002-0.


Parasites play an important role in the structure and function of arctic ecosystems, systems that are currently experiencing an unprecedented rate of change due to various anthropogenic perturbations, including climate change. Ungulates such as muskoxen, caribou, moose and Dall's sheep are also important components of northern ecosystems and are a source of food and income, as well as a focus for maintenance of cultural traditions, for northerners. Parasites of ungulates can influence host health, population dynamics and the quality, quantity and safety of meat and other products of animal origin consumed by people. In this article, we provide a contemporary view of the diversity of nematode, cestode, trematode, protozoan and arthropod parasites of ungulates in arctic and subarctic North America and Greenland. We explore the intricate associations among host and parasite assemblages and identify key issues and gaps in knowledge that emerge in a regime of accelerating environmental transition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arctic Regions
  • Biodiversity*
  • Climate
  • Ecosystem*
  • Environment
  • Greenland
  • Host-Parasite Interactions*
  • Humans
  • North America
  • Parasites / pathogenicity*
  • Ruminants / parasitology*