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Questions

1. What is a larval culture, what does it do and when might you use it?

2. What are the four key components of a successful lice biosecurity plan?

3. List the steps in the best practice treatment of flystruck sheep

4. Name a standard time when you should WormTest in goats.


WormTest kits can be supplied by a number of laboratories and veterinarians and these may have different names and contents.
WormTest kits can be supplied by a number of laboratories and veterinarians and these may have different names and contents.

Answers

1. What is a larval culture, what does it do and when might you use it?

When a WormTest is carried out, some laboratories can also perform a ‘Larval Culture’ (also called a ‘Larval Differentiation’) to identify the types of worms present and their proportion (the importance of this varies according to your location).
If your farm history shows one worm type predominates a culture is often not required, but when the proportion of the worm types could vary from normal (as shown below) a larval culture is indicated.

  1. After experiencing unusual weather conditions. For instance, wetter, cooler winters than usual in a summer rainfall area will favour scour worms, or wetter than normal summers (or irrigated summer pastures) in a winter rainfall area will favour barber’s pole worm.
  2. When you have been using a product that is specific to a particular worm species such as Barbervax® or closantel drenches, which have no effect on scour worms, allowing them to increase faster than barber’s pole worm.
  3. When you have been using a drench on your property that the scour worms are more resistant to than the barber’s pole worm or vice versa, it can lead to a build-up of the resistant species compared to the less resistant species.

2. What are the four key components of a successful lice biosecurity plan?

  1. Commitment to preventing lice being introduced
  2. Understand lice biology and how lice spread
  3. Recognition that all introduced sheep present a possible risk of introducing lice
  4. Awareness that communication within the local community assists lice biosecurity

3. List the steps in the best practice treatment of flystruck sheep.

  1. Shear struck wool and a 5 cm barrier of clean wool around the strike, close to the skin to remove maggots. 
  2. Collect the maggot-infested wool into a maggot-proof (plastic) bag and leave the bag in the sun for a couple of days to kill all maggots. This breaks the life cycle. 
  3. Apply a registered flystrike dressing to the shorn area to prevent re-strike.
  4. Remove struck sheep from the mob.
  5. Adult ewes that sustain repeated flystrike should be culled from breeding programs 

4. Name a standard time when you should WormTest in goats.

WormTests can be done at any time; however there are certain routine times to WormTest (preferably with a larval culture):

  • Pre-shearing for fibre goats.
  • Pre-kid marking for does. (Generally, there is no benefit from drenching kids at kid-marking, however, if a WormTest indicates that the does need drenching, the kids should also be drenched).
  • Pre-weaning for does. (Not for kids as they will be drenched at weaning).
  • From weaning time, WormTest all groups of goats at 4 week (higher risk months) or 6 week (lower risk months) intervals after they have been given a short-acting drench. If a persistent drench is given, use the Drench Decision Guide to decide when a WormTest should be done.

Other testing times may be region-specific, see YOUR regional Worm control program for details.