'On many farms, wormers are failing to control worms effectively'
Over the past two years, researchers in Teagasc Grange have being testing the effectiveness of various wormers on the market.
In their latest report on their work, researchers Anne Kelleher, Barbara Good and Orla Keane of AGRIC, Teagasc Grange, Co. Meath said a variety of different worm species can infect cattle, but the main species of economic importance are Ostertagia ostertagi, which infects the abomasum, and Cooperia oncophora, which infects the small intestine.
Infection with gut worms reduces feed intake and can cause parasitic gastroenteritis.
"Grazing cattle are continuously exposed to gut worms.
"Calves are most at risk as animals build up immunity over time," they said.
Current methods of gut worm control rely almost exclusively on the administration of broadspectrum anthelmintic products.
There are a wide variety of products on the market for gut worm control but ultimately all belong to one of three classes, each with a unique mode of action:
(i) benzimidazole, commonly known as white wormers;