Research journal article on sheep available |

Research journal article on sheep available

Gastro-intestinal Parasite (GIP) Infestation and Its Associated Effects on Growth Performance of Bucks on a Pasture-based Test in Maryland written by K. Nadarajah, S. Schoenian and D.L. Kuhlers is available on the American Sheep Industry Association’s website at The authors conclude that only bucks ranking high for growth performance and that are resistant to GIP should be considered for breeding.

Gastro-intestinal parasite (GIP) infestation is a major problem in sheep and goats and results in substantial economic losses. The authors investigated the prevalence of GIP infestation and its effects on the growth traits of bucks (n=416) on a performance test in Maryland over a 12-week-test period. Out of the total bucks tested, 53 percent did not receive any deworming treatment (RG) whereas 47 percent of bucks received one or more anthelmintic treatments (SG).

The RG bucks had higher average daily gain, higher body condition scores and were less anemic but had no difference in Fecal Egg Counts than SG bucks. Correlations between start-of-test body weight with FAMACHA© score (FAM) (-0.22, P < 0.0001) and between end-of-test body weight with FAM (-0.24; P < 0.0001) were negative. Regression average daily gain on FAM was negative (-5.99; P < 0.001) indicating that an increase of a unit of FAM score could reduce average daily gain of bucks by 5.99 g.

An understanding of the level of GIP infestation, its effects on performance of bucks and their relationships could benefit the goat industry. Only bucks that ranked high for growth performance and that are resistant to GIP should be considered for breeding.

–American Sheep Industry

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