9 July 1999

Drive to reduce use of wormers

MEMBERS of the Highlands and Islands Sheep Health Association are aiming to cut wormer use and risk of resistance developing by focussing on ewe health. Selling sheep without anthelmintic resistant worms should also help boost sales.

The programme is part of an EU project on sustainable alternatives to wormers in sheep and goat production. SAC is running the UKs contribution to the project, and is responsible for ensuring that the technology is transferred to HISHA members.

Norman Logie, HISHA co-ordinator says many producers routinely dose lambs for worms every three weeks whether they needed it or not. Now the aim is to concentrate on managing the flock to cut wormer dependence and reduce lamb challenge.

"There is concern about increasing wormer resistance. In addition, theres concern on the Continent about residues."

The SAC/HISHA programme aims to inform members about issues such as clean grazing techniques and feeding more protein to ewes to prevent them shedding worms before lambing. "We are trying to cut wormer use, resistance concerns and costs," he adds. &#42