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United Kingdom

Roundworm

Roundworms (nematodes) are important endoparasites, causing clinical disease and lost production in young sheep.

Most roundworms follow a similar life cycle.

Roundworm cycle in sheep

Parasitic gastroenteritis (PGE)

Roundworm control is inevitably complex. Exposure of naïve animals to infective L3 larvae on pasture can be minimised:

  • by finishing lambs quickly, before the challenge becomes production limiting;

  • by grazing susceptible sheep only on ‘safe’ pasture, thereby evading an infective L3 challenge;

  • or by using anthelmintic drugs to suppress pasture larval contamination.

Effective pharmaceutical drugs are, and will always be, essential for the treatment of clinical cases of PGE. The major gastrointestinal nematode parasites (worms) of UK sheep are the trichostrongyle worms:

  • Teladorsagia (formerly Ostertagia) circumcincta the ‘brown stomach worm’, found in the abomasum

  • Trichostrongylus vitrinus (or Trichostrongylus colubriformis in southern Britain) the ‘black scour worm’ found in the proximal small intestine

  • Haemonchus contortus (the ‘barber’s pole worm’)

  • Nematodirus battus

 

 

FARMERS

Find out more here...

The websites below are intended for UK professional keepers of animals, UK veterinary surgeons and SQPs only. By clicking through to these sites you confirm that this describes you.

Livestock Farming - Sheep

 

Parasite Watch

 

Parassist