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Published on Aug 8, 2018
Worms are a never ending battle for homesteaders. One day your animals are walking around the farm healthy as can be, the next minute you find them lifeless...
What are worms? What are they doing to your livestock? And what can you do to avoid them?
Worms are Parasites - an organism that lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the host's expense.
There are Gastrointestinal, tape, lung, liver fluke, meningeal, coccidia - single cell Protozoa... Specifically there are too many to list here!
What’s their life cycle? All worms life cycle are going to differ slightly, but generally All animals have some worm load already. Adult worms in those animals lay eggs in the digestive tract. Eggs are pooped out in feces, where those eggs then hatch into larva. Finally the larva crawl up vegetation which other animals eat... In the belly of those animals the larva matures to adulthood, and of course, the cycle repeats!
How do you prevent them? You can't totally prevent worms, but you can minimize their devastation.
We try to prevent worm problems in 3 ways 1- Buy the best livestock you can WHEN BUYING BREEDING STOCK... Don’t look at breeds, look at worm resistant LINES. Ask breeder about their worming program “Parasite resistance is one of the signature traits of the Katahdin breed, yet we’ve found that not all Katahdins are equally resistant. And we’ve found that the trait can be lost if it isn’t being actively selected for.”
Can’t afford good livestock? You can’t afford livestock
3 - Good management Rotational graze / Graze different animals Less than 4-10 days on same space (or less if you have too many animals) Don’t mow low, keep 5 inches on grass Pasture rest time of 60 days or more