The grazing season is well upon us and now is a good time to think about reviewing your worming protocols to improve lamb performance this year.
A mild spring has encouraged early grass growth but the mild winters over the past few years have increased the number of worms on pasture surviving from year to year. Combined with ever increasing resistance throughout the national flock, it is therefore essential that tactical worming is put in place to maximise profitability.
Faecal Egg Counting (FEC)
This is a valuable way of estimating the level of worm burden within your grazing lambs to decide whether or not there is a need to dose the lambs with wormer. Treating too often can be expensive, both in terms of wormer and time, and can increase drug resistance.
Follow these easy steps to perform a FEC:
- Take a small amount of very fresh dung from at least ten randomly selected piles and put in a leak proof pot – available free from Markeaton
- Within 24 hours bring the samples to Markeaton
- A vet will call you when the results become available and will offer appropriate, bespoke advice. This will include advice on which product would be right for you
Even low numbers of worms cause a decrease in growth rates through a reduction in appetite, damage to the gut wall causing reduced nutrient uptake and potentially diarrhoea. Appropriate management will ensure your lambs grow on well to finish quickly and maximise your margin.
We provide full worming management strategies and advice to farmers including grazing management and planning. If you think your lambs are not performing as they should then give us a call.