Saturday, October 13, 2012

Liver Fluke in East Friesian Dairy Sheep

The adult stage of this parasite lives in the bile ducts in the liver of sheep.
A very small number can pose a detrimental effect on the host. Larvae hatch eggs passed in the feces, but they must be ingested by a snail to move to the next stage of development. Flukes are usually found in damp meadows or wetlands where snails are present.
Prevention can be directed at drying up wetlands or fencing sheep away from them. Two available medications, Clorsulon and Albendazole are effective if given after the first of January when the larvae have developed into adults in the liver. After 2-4 years of use the number of eggs and larvae on the pasture should be greatly reduced and pose little threat. Continued use of these medications is necessary to prevent resurgence.
Have a wonderful weekend~

Andy Karras
Karras Farm

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