AUSTRALIAN sheep producers are in for a rocky ride with internal parasites this Summer, according to Coonamble based veterinarian Dr Jillian Kelly.
“This is the third ideal season for [particularly Barber’s Pole worms in a row and that means there are incredible amounts of larvae deposited on the paddocks,” she said.
Dr Kelly from Animal Health and Nutrition Consulting will deliver a ‘Summer Worm Update’ in a Sheep Connect New South Wales on Thursday, 24 November, from 1-2pm AEDT.
She said most producers did not have any ‘clean’ paddocks and had been heavily affected by flood waters, which meant it was difficult to handle stock and treat them.
“So it’s really just a perfect storm that we are heading into and Barber’s Pole worms can really sneak up and the sheep can look quite well and be quite deadly very shortly afterwards.
“So it’s potentially going to affect a lot of sheep and kill a lot of sheep if producers aren’t really on their game.”
Dr Kelly expected worms will survive and thrive despite the recent flood waters, and love the nice mild conditions.
“So these are the perfect environmental conditions for sheep to rapidly re-infect themselves off the pastures.
“In some areas sheep are congregating together …. and sometimes it’s not because of flood water, it might be because they are trying to stay out of long grass or stay away from mosquitoes,” she said.
“And they are huddled together and are grazing to the low to the ground and we know that the vast majority of worm larvae live within five or ten centimetres of the ground,” Dr Kelly said.
“So if they are grazing low to the ground and especially if they are congregating and eating where they are defecating, they will be significantly at risk.”
Add this to any issues of poor nutrition due to water-saturated grass and flystrike or other pressures and their immune systems are compromised, worms will “have a party”, she said.
Thank you for registering for “Summer Worm Update”.
Join Dr Jillian Kelly to find the best ways to tactical worm this season. The warm wet weather promises a challenging season this year with regards to worm.
Dr Kelly said she would going through some strategies for producers, especially those who might lucky enough to be getting on a header soon and need to have their parasite status defined and a management strategy organised to avoid interruptions to harvest.
“We’ve got a lot stacked against us this year — we’ve got perfect environmental conditions, we’ve got huge larval burdens, we know that we’ve got significant drench resistance to a lot of the popular chemicals on the market, and we’re probably going to have a long drawn out harvest, if you are lucky enough to get a harvest.
“So we really need to be really smart about how we approach it and take a fairly considered and long-term view of your parasite management, otherwise you are going to run into big trouble.”
Click here to register for the Sheep Connect NSW webinar.