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WormBoss worm control program

Pastoral

 

Factors contributing to paddock contamination with worms


The following table applies to brown stomach worm (Teladorsagia [formerly Ostertagiacircumcincta)black scour worm (Trichostrongylus species) and barber’s pole worm (Haemonchus contortus).

Factor Time or conditions Effect

Minimum time before worm eggs can become infective larvae.

4–10 days

Short graze periods (less than 4 days) prevent ‘auto-infection’ (sheep becoming infected by larvae arising from worm eggs the same mob have recently deposited onto the pasture).

Conditions required for significant numbers of worm eggs to hatch and become infective larvae.

4–10 days of:

Brown stomach worm
Temperature: daily maximum >8°C1
Moisture in this time: >10–15 mm rainfall2

Black scour worm
Temperature: daily maximum >15°C for
T. colubriformis or >12°C for T. vitrinus
Moisture in this time: >10–15 mm rainfall3

Barber’s pole worm
Temperature: daily maximum >18°C1
Moisture in this time: >10–15 mm rainfall3

1Some hatching of worm eggs of all species can occur below these daily maximum levels, but this is usually at a small and insignificant rate.
2Brown stomach worm eggs can develop at low rates without rainfall even in a relatively dry faecal pellet.
3Development to infective larvae may occur without rainfall if soil moisture profile is high.

Unsuitable conditions prevent eggs hatching and developing into infective larvae.

Note: The eggs of the small brown stomach worm are much more tolerant of cold and dry conditions, and in general, grazing management has less effect on its control.

Maximum time worm eggs can live awaiting suitable hatching conditions.

Brown stomach worm: 21 days

Some brown stomach worm eggs may survive for longer periods. Once hatched, infective larvae can remain in the faecal pellet until conditions are more suitable.

Black scour worm: 16 days

Once hatched, infective larvae can remain in the faecal pellet until conditions are more suitable.

Barber's pole worm: 5 days

Prolonged periods without the right conditions (temperature/moisture) for egg development will result in the eggs dying. This lowers the worm-risk of paddocks.

The time for about 90% of the barber’s pole worm infective larvae (L3s) to die (making paddocks low worm-risk).
Note: Larvae of brown stomach worm and black scour worm can survive longer because they can remain in the faecal pellet for extended periods.

 

Maximum temperature (ºC)

Time for 90% to die

Cold

< 15

4 months

Warm

about 22

3 months

Hot

about 35

1.5 months

Very hot

> 40

1–2 weeks

L3 larvae do not feed. While waiting to be eaten by sheep, they wriggle randomly in drops of moisture, more so in warmer conditions. Increased activity in warm weather depletes their energy reserves faster, hastening death.

In extremely hot, dry and windy conditions the larvae dry out and die.

Minimum time for infective larvae eaten by sheep to mature and lay eggs (the ‘pre-patent period’).

Minimum of 18 days for most sheep roundworms.

Worm larvae eaten by sheep soon after an effective drench will take at least 18 days before they can lay eggs. During this period after administering an effective drench sheep are not re-infecting the pasture.