Date of Submission

Spring 2012

Academic Program


Project Advisor 1

Michael Tibbetts

Abstract/Artist's Statement

This experiment explored the effect of diet on parasite load in sheep to determine an effective and feasible management strategy for farmers using pasture systems. Three pasture treatments were used: chicory, perennial rye grass and a mix containing white clover, grasses, and chicory. Chicory contains condensed tannins, compounds that bind protein in the first chamber of the ruminant stomach, which have been linked to the reduction of intestinal parasites. This experiment explores the effectiveness of a mixed pasture in reducing parasite load while maintaining a high live weight. Fecal egg count (FEC) and live weight were used to track overall health and parasite load in 36 lambs over a one-month period. The results showed promise in pasture containing a high percentage of chicory. More research must be done to confirm the effectiveness of alternate diet for managing parasite control.

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