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Triclabendazole Use Should Be Autumn/Winter Only

04 September 2015

UK – Sheep flocks are heading into the season for which triclabendazole should be reserved to address acute liver fluke, advises a leading sheep expert.

Peers Davies, University of Nottingham, has said that triclabendazole should be used where fluke is present, although farms should be conscious of resistance issues.

He prioritised lambs as particularly high risk from ingesting high numbers of metacercariae stage of the liver fluke from grass.

“Lambs can ingest very large numbers of liver fluke, causing such severe damage that every often lambs are found dead as the first presenting sign,” said Mr Davies.

“Sub-acute or chronic fluke is more common in cattle and adult ewes are more likely to ingest smaller amounts of fluke over a longer period of time, leading to the development of a more insidious or chronic disease.”

He said preventative treatment for liver fluke in ewes is necessary on many farms, weather and condition dependent, but noted the long withdrawal periods to consider when grazing and planning treatments for finishing or store lambs.

He stressed that triclabendazole resistance in the sheep industry is a “major concern” and farms should not over rely on the drug.

“Overreliance on triclabendazoles leaves flocks exposed to severe financial losses if these products stop working,” said Mr Davies.

“There really is no alternative products that is equally preventative in the autumn for acute fluke.”

He prescribed triclabendazole for autumn/winter only to to avoid promoting the development of resistance.

“Similarly, we don’t want to use combination fluke and wormer products unless we’re sure both components are required.

“Otherwise you will promote the development of resistance to the wormer component, worsening your wormer resistance issues.”

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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