Lambs at risk from infection
EARLY-BORN lambs old enough to be grazing are at risk of worm infection following earlier hatching of nematodirus larvae than usual triggered by the warm, wet conditions in February.
High levels of larvae would be expected to hatch after the mild conditions and rain in late February, causing problems in early March in grazing lambs, says parasitologist Gordon Graham. These lambs may have picked up infection already and will need watching closely and precautions taken if needed, he says.
"Where lambs are grazing there is a need to be vigilant."
On the bright side, however, he suggests the mild winter should reduce concerns with nematodirus this year because a proportion of the larvae have hatched before the main lamb crop starts grazing.
And with the return to colder weather, he expects hatching to be put on hold again and any immediate worm risks to lambs to reduce. *