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Farms Entering Critical Nematodirus Period

28 April 2015

UK – Now is the time to watch for signs of scour caused by Nematodirus, as many lambs pass through the critical six to twelve week period.

This is the advice of the Agri-Food Biosciences Institute in Northern Ireland which says the parasite normally only affects lambs of this age.

Meteorological readings have forecast peak hatching around mid and late April and the AFBINI advises farmers to be alert for scouring lambs into May.

“Clinical signs usually appear two weeks after ingestion of large numbers of larvae,” says the team at the Disease Surveillance and Investigation Branch.

Advisers say clinical signs, which can be confused with coccidiosis, should be followed up with a veterinary consultation.

“Your veterinary surgeon should be consulted at an early stage,” adds the team. “He or she is in an ideal position to provide advice on the prevention and /or treatment strategy best suited to your particular circumstances.”

Nematodirus threat can be reduced or avoided through pasture rotation and anthelmintic drenches.

The AFBINI suggests grazing lambs on different pasture to last year’s lamb crop and drenching every two to four weeks.

“The interval between doses depends both on the particular anthelmintic used and the severity of infection,” says the AFBINI. “To date, only limited evidence has been found of drug resistance in Nematodirus to any of the available classes of anthelmintic.”

Michael Priestley

Michael Priestley
News Team - Editor

Mainly production and market stories on ruminants sector. Works closely with sustainability consultants at FAI Farms.

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