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Questions

1. Which nutritional component is more important for building worm resistance in stock: energy or protein?

2. After shearing wool from the affected area of a flystruck sheep, why is it recommended that maggot-infested wool is collected and put into a bag in the sun?

3. How do sheep lice backline products make contact with the lice?

4. Which classes of goats are most susceptible to worms?


Angora doe and kids. Source: GT Ferreira.
Angora doe and kids. Source: GT Ferreira.

Answers

1. Which nutritional component is more important for building worm resistance in stock: energy or protein?

The resistance and resilience of sheep to worms is affected by different aspects of nutrition. It is the supply of protein that is most important for regulating the resistance of sheep to worms. This is largely because worm infection results in sheep diverting protein from muscle and wool growth to the immune response and the need to repair the damaged gut. In contrast, both protein and energy are equally important in improving resilience to infection.

2. After shearing wool from the affected area of a flystruck sheep, why is it recommended that maggot-infested wool is collected and put into a bag in the sun?

  • The bag will become hot and the maggots will die. This breaks the life cycle, which is especially important if the maggots have survived on sheep that have had a preventative product applied previously and these maggots are resistant to the product.
  • ​Unless maggot infested wool is collected and bagged, most maggots will survive and pupate and come back as adult flies.

3. How do sheep lice backline products make contact with the lice?

Which is the correct answer?

a) The chemical spreads in the wool grease, and if applied correctly on and to each side of the backline it gradually spreads to all woolled areas of the sheep within 4–6 weeks, where the lice come into contact with it.

b) Lice only move a small distance each 24 hours (about 4–6 cm), but by 6 weeks post-application all will have moved to an area where the backline was applied and will come into direct contact with the product.

c) The backline product is absorbed through the skin (hence most need to be applied off-shears to make good skin contact) and is carried in the bloodstream throughout the sheep including back to all areas of the skin where the lice contact it when chewing the skin cells.

The correct answer is a.

Lice do not move around the sheep to the extent that they will all come into contact with the backline.

Lice backline ingredients are not absorbed to any significant degree.
[The exception is the combined worm and lice treatment containing abamectin in an aqueous micellar formulation*—the absorbed product has effect against internal nematode parasites, however, the effect on lice is still via spread through the wool grease across the body. 
*United States Patent Application Publication No.: US 2012/0196821 A1 Method and formulation for the control of parasites, page 4.]

4. Which classes of goats are most susceptible to worms?

Kids up to 12–18 months of age are susceptible to worms, and especially after the stress of weaning.

During late pregnancy and early lactation the resistance of does to worm infection is usually lost or greatly reduced, resulting in a rise in worm egg count around the time of kidding. As a result, worm eggs from does can be a major source of worm infection for young kids.