We describe the blood and intestinal parasites in the Ocellated lizard, Lacerta lepida, examining the factors that determine the prevalence and intensity of infection of haemogregarines, and the prevalence of coccidia and nematodes. In relation to haemogregarines, no juveniles were detected as being infected, whereas 71.7 % of adults were infected. The prevalence of infection was positively related to the size of the adults. There were no differences between seasons or sexes in the prevalence or intensity of infection in adults. There were no significant differences in the prevalence of infection by nematodes between ages or sexes, nor in relation to the size of adult lizards, but adult lizards excreting coccidian oocysts tend to be smaller. During the mating period, reproductive activities lead to a decrease in the body condition. However, neither the intensity of haemogregarine's infection nor the prevalence of intestinal parasites was related to the lizards' body condition.
- IMMUNOCOMPETENCE-HANDICAP HYPOTHESIS
- TESTOSTERONE INCREASES
- SEXUAL SELECTION
- FENCE LIZARDS