Lower risk of liver fluke

Nov 11 2014

The risk of liver fluke in cattle is lower this year than it was in 2013 due to a relatively dry autumn, according to an industry stakeholder group which includes Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC).

Therefore, COWS (Control of Worms Sustainably) is advising that fluke treatments for cattle need not be based on products with triclabendazole as the active ingredient in low risk areas such as much of England and Wales.

Instead, treatments can be based on products containing closantel or nitroxynil, which only kill older immature fluke. These products can either be given at housing and then repeated if required, or delayed until 6-8 weeks after housing. 

Similarly, products that only kill adult fluke such as clorsulon, oxyclozanide and albendazole could be used around housing time and then again three months later if necessary. Using products other than triclabendazole will help reduce any selection for resistance that could occur in herds that rely on this product routinely. 

“There are a number of anthelmintic flukicides available for use in cattle in the UK”, said Lynfa Davies, HCC’s Technical Development Executive.

“These have various administration routes including oral, pour-on or by subcutaneous injection. Whatever the route, it is imperative that animals are dosed according to their liveweight and the dosing instructions are followed carefully.

“At a time when cattle will be housed, this advice from COWS is very timely and useful.”

COWS provides evidence-based information to the cattle industry in relation to the sustainable control of parasites.

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