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  • Kendra R. Shatswell

Deworming Stats 2021

A total of 27 treatments were administered to the herd in 2021. For the majority of the year, I had between 30-40 adult animals and had nearly 30 kids for at least half of the year then about half that number until fall.

Fresh does = 8 treatments total

Dry does or yearlings = 12 treatments total

Kids = 6 treatments total

Bucks = 1 treatment total

I freshened a total of 15 does, most of which freshened in February. Most were treated within a month of freshening, so the majority of treatments were in February and March. In April, I treated three dry yearlings for suspected lungworm, which required two treatments each. Of the kids, I thought it was interesting that all three of the latest kids needed treatment. This has held true a couple seasons, now.

Two of the dry doe treatments were new does brought in and so it was a precaution. Assuming an average of 35 adult (I lump dry yearlings in with this) animals in the year, required treatment was .6 times per animal. At the lowest number of adult animals I had in the year, it would be .7 times and at the highest it would be .5 times. A total of 29 kids were born on the farm. Two went at birth as bottle babies, so 27 were on the farm at least half the year. Divide by 6 treatments and that is an average of .2 treatments per kid. No kids required treatment before August, which I thought was interesting.

As opposed to treating 12 of 21 kids for tapes last year, I only treated 3 of 27 this year, and treated those in conjunction with other parasites. I did change my weaning pen set up, giving the weaning kids an entire pasture instead of a paddock. Maybe this helped or maybe I had less issue because I treated last year.

A lot of the herd, especially the adults, spent the summer and fall on the middle hill, the one still heavy in tall browse and sericea lespedeza. Parasite management is multi-faceted and I strive to use every "trick" I can to make sure my herd is healthy. Overall, I think this shows my management practices and herd are still improving! I was actually pleasantly surprised totaling these up. I must point out (though I shouldn't have to!) that I will never NOT treat an animal that needs it just for the sake of these numbers – that would be horrible goat husbandry.

I can’t stress the importance of running fecals and STRONGLY suggest buying a microscope and McMaster slide and learning to do it yourself – buy the premade fecal float solution and the fecalyzers, while you’re at it! Those are so much simpler, in my opinion, and more accurate. For more information on deworming, check out the recommended posts below and keep an eye out for more installments this year! Don't forget you can sign up for blog posts so you never miss one! In the meantime, please go read up at the American Consortium for Small Ruminant Parasite Control website, too - it is an entire website dedicated to managing parasites in goats and sheep.

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