Worm Egg Counts for poultry as part of your effective worming strategy

Poultry

Protect your poultry

Parasitic worms pose a significant threat to poultry. They are easily contracted and, if not effectively treated, can cause serious illness or death.

A WEC counts the parasite eggs in the bird’s faeces. It will help you accurately diagnose worms and identify the specific parasite.

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Effective worm control

WECs will help you:

  • Only treat your birds when necessary
  • Use a targeted treatment
  • Predict future heavy worm burdens
  • Monitor the effectiveness of your worm control programme
  • Slow the rate of AR

The aim of effective worm control is to stop worms completing their lifecycle and prevent future contamination.

A WEC tells you about your bird’s parasite burden at a single point in time. However, the lifecycle of a worm includes several larval stages that do not show in WECs. So even if the test results show no evidence of active adult worms, your bird may still carry a worm burden.

Therefore, to build an accurate picture of your bird’s internal health, you should repeat the test regularly.

Worms commonly found in poultry

The majority of parasitic worms found in domestic poultry infect the digestive tract. They can affect both the bird’s general health and productivity.

Nematodes

Notes Nematodes of most concern include Ascaridia galli, Capillaria spp., Heterakis gallinarum and Syngamus trachea.
Most commonly affect Young birds with access to the outside; organic birds.
Signs and symptoms Inactivity; loss of appetite; weight loss.
Can lead to May be fatal.
Control Management of pasture with rotation where possible. Strategic use of anthelmintics.

Cestodes

Notes Tapeworms of most concern are Davainea proglottina or Rallietina spp.
Birds outdoors with access to intermediate hosts.
Signs and symptoms Weight loss; drop in egg production.
Can lead to Emaciation, breathing difficulties, may be fatal.
Control Where feasible, prevent access to intermediate hosts.