Cattle Farmers on Watch for Worms

Article excerpt

WHILE land owners are rejoicing over the recent spate of wet weather, the conditions have increased the chances of intestinal parasitic worm outbreaks, particularly for young cattle in the Bundaberg region.

Gayndah beef extension officer Russ Tyler said cattle farmers should be using proactive management strategies before symptoms of worm infestation became obvious.

Mr Tyler said it was the younger cattle under seven months of age that were at most risk of severe infection.

"As cattle age, they gradually develop resistance to roundworm infection and, by two years, they should carry very few worms, if any at all," he said.

"Given the recent rains and an abundance of lush grass, heavily stocked calf and weaner paddocks could put these young cattle at risk."

Animal Research Institute senior scientist Maxine Lyndal-Murphy said owners of cattle, goats and alpacas should invest in a WormTest kit to determine if their stock were carrying any serious worm infections

"A positive test will enable owners to drench their animals before the worm burden has a chance to dramatically reduce weight gains," she said. …

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