Faecal egg counts to improve worm control in organic sheep farming

Dewormers represent a contentious input in organic farming. Their synthetic residues enter animal products and the environment, and further contribute to the global spread of anthelmintic resistance. Monitoring of faecal egg counts (FEC) is the most powerful tool available to determine levels of worm infections on farm. When done correctly, they can significantly improve parasite control strategies.

FEC can reduce anthelmintic inputs by enabling:

• Strategic targeting of anthelmintic treatments

• Identification of worm resistant animals for selective breeding

• Detection of anthelmintic resistance in flocks

RELACS-Improving inputs for organic farming