Efficacy of Natural Dewormers in the Control of Gastrointestinal Nematodes of Small Ruminants
The objectives of the proposed research are: 1) to determine the efficacy of non-chemical/natural means of parasite control (pumpkin seeds, garlic, ginger, and papaya seeds) in small ruminants, and 2) to educate producers about natural dewormers and integrated parasite management (FAMACHA, fecal egg counting, and pasture management). The project will be conducted at Delaware State University’s Farm and also on producer farms in DE and MD.
During year one, (in collaboration with Univ. of Maryland Eastern Shore), naturally infected crossbred goats and crossbred hair sheep lambs were fed diets containing pumpkin seeds and/or garlic and levels of parasitism and growth monitored. The influence of both natural dewormers on nutritional composition and meat quality is currently being determined. Two abstracts have been submitted and one will be presented at the Southern Association of Agricultural Scientist meeting this winter and the other at the 15th Biennial Research Symposium of the Association of Research Directors, Inc. (ARD) next spring. In addition, two Integrated Parasite Management (IPM) workshops will be held during the upcoming spring to educate small ruminant producers on the efficacy of natural dewormers and IPM techniques.
Fifteen small ruminant producers will decrease reliance on chemical dewormers through the use of an alternative natural dewormer and/or other IPM practices such as the use of FAMACHA and fecal egg counting for parasite control in their flocks.
•Three experiments have been conducted on the efficacy of garlic (sheep and goats) and pumpkin seeds (goats) in controlling internal parasites in small ruminants
•Three emails from producers and industry interested in the use of natural dewormers in small ruminants
•Increased interest among producers in Delaware and Maryland for IPM workshops and the use of pumpkin seeds, in particular, to reduce/control parasites
In addition to two controlled experiments, another study was included during year one to look at a single dose of garlic juice in reducing fecal egg counts in grazing goats based on producer interest. Experiments looking at the efficacy of ginger and papaya seeds were not included during year one due to time constraints and facility upgrade at Delaware State University (DSU). During year two, all four goat research projects will be done at DSU while all sheep research will be conducted at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. This will ensure that all experiments are completed by the end of year two and all milestones are met.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
At DSU, twenty-two goat kids were used to evaluate the effect of pumpkin seeds in reducing parasite loads. Goats were individually penned on solid concrete floors and received a commercially pelleted meat goat feed daily for a 3 week study. Eleven animals were also given ground pumpkin seeds mixed into feed at a rate of 170 g/34.1 kg body weight. The other eleven were not supplemented and used as a control. Overall, under the conditions of this study, pumpkin seeds were not effective in reducing FEC in meat goat kids. However, the method of administration (grinded pumpkin seeds) might not have been the most effective treatment method because the goats failed to consume all the seeds fed and sorted quite a bit. Therefore, year two’s study will include the use of either a powdered form of pumpkin seeds or a daily drench to ensure that animals consume the correct dose.
A second study at DSU attempted to determine the effectiveness of a single dose of garlic juice in reducing fecal egg counts in grazing meat goat kids. Twenty-three crossbred Boer goat kids were used in this study. Twelve animals received garlic juice while the remaining 11 were left untreated. The third study was done at UMES where eighteen Katahdin ewe lambs were placed in individual pens and given either garlic juice (8 lambs) or water (8 lambs) daily for 3 weeks. In both studies, garlic failed to reduce fecal egg counts in sheep and goats. Based on these results, different doses will be tried in year two and studies will be done for at least 28 days to confirm that garlic fails to control internal parasites.
These studies so far have indicated that garlic and pumpkin seeds fail to reduce internal parasites in goats and sheep (garlic only). However, further studies are needed to determine if higher doses might be effective or if these natural plant dewormers could be used to control rather than treat parasite infections.
The results obtained so far will be presented to veterinarians, researchers and extension specialists at the Southern Association of Agricultural Scientist meeting this winter and the 15th Biennial Research Symposium of the Association of Research Directors, Inc. (ARD) next spring. In addition, results will be distributed to producers via an article that will be submitted in the Spring 2009 edition of the Wild and Wooly newsletter (formerly Maryland Sheep and Goat Newsletter).
Delaware State University
1200 N Dupont Highway
Dover , DE 19901
Office Phone: 3028576410
Producer and member of LSGPA
Office Phone: 4107262913
DE Goat Producer
Producer and member of Delmarva Goat Association
Office Phone: 3026708194
Delaware State University
1200 N Dupont Highway
Dover, DE 19901
Office Phone: 3028576491
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, LA 70803
Office Phone: 2255789652
Associate Professor/Extension Specialist
University of Maryland Eastern Shore
Princess Anne, MD 21853
Office Phone: 4106516194
Sheep and Goat Specialist
Western Maryland Research & Education Center
18330 Keedysville Road, Keedysville,
Office Phone: 3014322767