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March 3, 2018 – 2018 Southern New England Shepherds Forum, Norfolk Ag School, Walpole, MA.  Classes include Parasite Resistance and How to Read Fecal Egg Counts, Dr. Katherine Petersson, Univ. of Rhode Island, Dept. Fisheries, Animal and Veterinary Science.  Sponsored by the Rhode Island Sheep Cooperative.  View flyer for more information.

Learn more about our online training program for FAMACHA© Certification

Learn more about our Project:  New Approaches for Improving Integrated Parasite Control Strategies for Small Ruminants in the Northeast, which includes support for selective breeding for resistance to gastrointestinal worms through National Sheep Improvement Program (NSIP) Workshops and fecal egg count analysis.

Overview: Why Worry About Parasites?

Barber Pole Worm (Haemonchus contortus); http://vet.uga.edu

lambs_Peckham2  Gastrointestinal nematode (GIN) parasites, such as the barber pole worm (Haemonchus contortus), are a serious problem affecting small ruminant production throughout the Northeast region and world. These parasites cause poor growth, anemia, and death in severe infections and limit the ability of producers to raise sheep and goats on pasture.  Learn more about these parasites.

Growing and widespread resistance to chemical dewormers, coupled with producer wishes to reduce or eliminate reliance on these drugs, has created a need for alternative and integrated parasite control practices.

Our Program

URI Cooperative Extension and the Dept. of Fisheries, Animal and Veterinary Sciences collaborate with farmers and other partners from New England and the Northeast region to provide research and education on integrated parasite control management.  This includes practices such as selective deworming and smart drug use, along with alternative controls including a variety of pasture management practices that reduce parasite exposure.

Online FAMACHA© Certification
The FAMACHA© System – a method for estimating the level of anemia in sheep and goats associated with the barber pole worm (Haemonchus contortus) – is a crucial tool for selective deworming.  The FAMACHA© card, developed in South Africa, was introduced to the U.S. by the American Consortium for Small Ruminant Parasite Control (www.acsrpc.org).  This online training program was developed by Dr. Katherine Petersson and Dr. Anne Zajac, DVM, members of the ACSRPC, as part of a Northeast SARE grant being administered by the University of Rhode Island.  The ACSRPC fully endorses the program for those who are unable to attend a workshop.

Endorsed by ACSRPC


We are also conducting research on some alternative solutions to chemical dewormers, including the bioactive component in condensed tannins (CT) found in cranberry and some forages such as birdsfoot trefoil.


Learn more about our projects, educational resources and research on these topics.

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