Tricia Veale, Benalla (firstname.lastname@example.org):
Here in North East Victoria there was 64mm of rain in August and only 11mm so far for September. Some properties are beginning to superficially dry out now, however, the last few months of wettish weather is keeping worm egg counts at moderate to high levels generally.
It has been a bad year for flystrike in this area but worms are likely to have caused the most deaths in sheep recently.
Numbers of worm larvae will most probably continue to increase to their annual peak around October.
Coccidian oocysts of Eimeria spp. are now being seen at moderate to high levels, especially in goats and young kids. Young scouring lambs, kids and calves should be checked so we suggest that you send in some samples for worm egg counts as well as for coccidia examinations. It's important not to drench animals unless it is needed.
Liver fluke tests indicate that these parasites are still active on many properties.
For goat owners, goats continue to exhibit very high worm egg counts on many farms. Please be aware that quite a number of drench products are not registered for use in goats. There is great concern as there is evidence that Ostertagia are becoming increasingly resistant to most of the drench groups. As worms can pass between goats and sheep, it is very important that goat owners do not escalate this situation by using routine sheep drench doses on their animals.
Check the instructions before you drench, and give the correct dose by weight.