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Online learning: East Coast—Deciding when to drench and what drench to use

This strategy describes when to use strategic drenches and how to decide when tactical/therapeutic drenches are needed.

Structured reading

For those who like to see all the information and simply read through it in order. Each heading is a link to a page of information—the dot point provides a summary of the page.

Tip: Keep this page open and open the links in new tabs.

East Coast: When to test and when to drench
The times for routine worm testing and drenching in this region. Not all testing or drenching is routine; other times to do these are recommended by the Drench Decision Guide, according to details you provide about your mob of goats.

East Coast: Drench Decision Guide
This tool recommends whether a mob should be drenched, the length of protection warranted and when to worm test again. It is your day-to-day tool on drenching decisions that should be used in conjunction with the annual program of routine testing and drenching times.

The DDG tool steers you through a series of questions about your goats; choose the answer that applies to your mob (or make up your own scenario).

Question and answer

For those who prefer a problem based approach to learning, answer the following questions.
Each of the questions below links further down the page to the answers.

Questions:

  1. What is the purpose of a strategic drench?
  2. Which classes of goats receive a routine (strategic) drench, and when?
  3. The online Drench Decision Guide (DDG) for East Coast assists you to decide whether a mob of goats should be drenched now and when to test again. Open the DDG and answer the questions it offers based on the scenario (from below) that you are using. Try at least three of the following scenarios.

If you are in a barber’s pole region:

  • Does that are currently in early pregnancy on good pasture and in good condition. The recent results showed 65% barbers pole worms and a WEC of 900 epg
  • Does close to kidding but you don’t have any low risk paddocks to move them into.
  • These are adult non-pregnant goats but 1% are struggling to keep up with the rest of the herd and have pale mucous membranes
  • Kids that will be weaned in the next fortnight but there is no low risk paddocks to wean them into
  • A group of bucks in which about 1% have scours or loose faeces
  • A herd of adult goats in good condition but on pasture that is now dry and short and the last WEC showed 800 epg. I have no recent worm culture results.

If you are in a scour worm region:

  • Weaners in May that received a combo drench into a prepared winter weaner paddock about a month ago, less than 5% are scouring, an egg count shows 80 epg.
  • Weaners in late January that were drenched with Fenbendazole at weaning in early December. There are no signs of scouring and they look healthy.
  • Does in November. No drench was required before kidding. About 15% are scouring.
  • Does received a first summer BZ/LEV/ML drench in early December, it is now mid-January. Summer has been unusually wet. Goats are not scouring but a couple of does were found dead in the paddock and others are lagging during mustering.
  • Late-kidding does in good condition just prior to being moved to their kidding paddock. A worm egg count shows 350 epg.
  • Kids just about to be weaned, they look well-grown with no obvious signs of worms.

Answers:

You can also click on each question below to go to WormBoss pages with related information.

1. What is the purpose of a strategic drench?

Strategic drench: a drench given at a critical time to goats that are susceptible to worm infection (e.g. weaners and pre-kidding does), and also given at times to reduce worm larval contamination of a pasture that will be grazed by the drenched goats over the following weeks or months. The goats themselves may have had a low worm egg count at the time of this pre-emptive treatment.

2. Which classes of goats receive a routine (strategic) drench, and when?

In this region there are two situations where goats should be drenched without a prior WormTest, these are:

  • Pregnant does just prior to kidding when they enter their kidding paddock. The worm challenge is typically about to rise at this time of year and kidding does, which experience a temporary loss of immunity during lactation, can contribute to a large increase in paddock contamination and a source of ongoing infection for themselves and their kids.
  • Kids at weaning. Weaned kids are highly susceptible to worms, especially from the stress of weaning. Summer weaning also coincides with high worm-risk weather conditions. Drenching at weaning will help weaners to achieve the growth rates needed for survival.

In both cases use a drench known to be effective on your property. Preferably use a short-acting treatment, and where possible, use a multi-active combination. After these drenches, move the goats into prepared low worm-risk paddocks.

3. The online Drench Decision Guide (DDG) for East Coast assists you to decide whether a herd of goats should be drenched now and when to test again. Open the DDG and answer the questions it offers based on the scenario (from below) that you are using. Try at least three of the following scenarios.

If you are in a barber’s pole region:

  • Does that are currently in early pregnancy on good pasture and in good condition. The recent results showed 65% barbers pole worms and a WEC of 900 epg
  • Does close to kidding but you don’t have any low risk paddocks to move them into.
  • These are adult non-pregnant goats but 1% are struggling to keep up with the rest of the herd and have pale mucous membranes
  • Kids that will be weaned in the next fortnight but there is no low risk paddocks to wean them into
  • A group of bucks in which about 1% have scours or loose faeces
  • A herd of adult goats in good condition but on pasture that is now dry and short and the last WEC showed 800 epg. I have no recent worm culture results.

If you are in a scour worm region:

  • Weaners in May that received a combo drench into a prepared winter weaner paddock about a month ago, less than 5% are scouring, an egg count shows 80 epg.
  • Weaners in late January that were drenched with Fenbendazole at weaning in early December. There are no signs of scouring and they look healthy.
  • Does in November. No drench was required before kidding. About 15% are scouring.
  • Does received a first summer BZ/LEV/ML drench in early December, it is now mid-January. Summer has been unusually wet. Goats are not scouring but a couple of does were found dead in the paddock and others are lagging during mustering.
  • Late-kidding does in good condition just prior to being moved to their kidding paddock. A worm egg count shows 350 epg.
  • Kids just about to be weaned, they look well-grown with no obvious signs of worms.

Links to the learning topics for East Coast

  1. Introduction
  2. Grazing management
  3. Breeding for worm resistance
  4. Worm testing
  5. Drenching (you are currently on this page)
  6. Drench resistance management
  7. Goat worms