WRML.2017-12-08. sundry and various


Some recently published worm-related NSW DPI Primefacts:

Other recent:

BioWorma – Duddingtonia references


UNE ‘Micro Method’ for doing worm egg counts on bulk faecal samples (sheep, goats etc)



As intimated previously, WormMail and its editor is taking a break for a few-several months.  🙂 .. Deo volente       Best wishes to you all!

SL    Armidale 2017-12-08T09:30






BioWorma – Duddingtonia references

A list of papers/documents more or less related to ‘BioWorma’ – Duddingtonia flagrans


Duddingtonia etc references BioWorma APVMA frm Deb M 2017-12-01.106347

(Thanks for the heads up Dr Maxwell 🙂


SL, Armidale  2017-12-01

WRML.2017-11-06.lev vs Osters.buying sheep-hazards.Graham Centre etc

In this issue:

Smeal on levamisole v Ostertagia in cattle
Buying sheep – ‘health hazards’
NSW DPI and Synthetic Biology
Graham Centre 2018 Calendar of Events
Blood and plasma donation: effect on exercise
(Good) culture beats strategy
Tip for the Melbourne Cup??
Aussie bush etiquette
Digital Resource Lifespan

Smeal on levamisole v Ostertagia in cattle

You might say levamisole (LEV) is one of the first modern anthelmintics. It came onto the Australian market about the same time as thiabendazole (TBZ), about half a century ago (1960s). How time flies.

Nilverm and Ripercol (LEV), and Thibenzole (TBZ), became household names, at least in country areas.

Although its usefulness has been limited to varying extents by the rise of resistant worms (endoparasites), not least in small ruminants, LEV is still a useful drench active (and easy to use and relatively cheap), especially as a component of multi-active combination drenches.

In cattle, it is useful against a range of worms, resistance notwithstanding, but its weak spot, relatively speaking, is Ostertagia ostertagi – small brown stomach worm – the most important gastrointestinal roundworm of cattle in temperate regions of the world.  (Every drench active has its strengths and weaknesses, depending on your point of view). LEV can have useful activity against adult Ostertagia, but is not great against inhibited L4s (4th stage larvae) in the abomasum.

While perusing a book by Dr Malcolm Smeal, a former NSW Agriculture veterinarian / research scientist, I came across the following. Much of it won’t be new to you, but some of the detail may be.

“Levamisole preparations which are given orally and subcutaneously have a high efficacy against O. ostertagi worms acquired during autumn and winter by calves less than 1 year of age. By comparison, the efficacy of oral levamisole against Type 2 adult O. ostertagi burdens in 15 to 18 months old cattle in summer shows a large variation between 50% and 80%. Levamisole is not very effective against inhibited larvae, as only about 30% of the burden is removed”.

“Pour-on formulations of levamisole at dose rates of 7.5 and 10 mg/kg give low percentage efficacies of 30% to 70% against adult worms during cold winter months, whereas treatments applied during the warmer months of the year have a higher anthelmintic efficacy of 80% to 90%. Levamisole is absorbed poorly percutaneously, but climatic conditions appear to affect the rate and amount of absorption of the drug into the systemic circulation. Because of the variable Australian climates, a much higher dose rate than that recommended is required (this would constitute ‘off-label’ use -Ed.) if dermally administered levamisole is to control O. ostertagi and other nematodes.” 

Perhaps formulation chemistry has improved somewhat since the mid-1990s, when Malcolm Smeal wrote his book, but note the findings of Sargent and others (2009) regarding variable efficacies of pour-on triclabendazole products administered at different times of the year.

Sargent RM, Chambers M, and Elliott T, 2009. Seasonal differences in the efficacy of pour-on formulations of triclabendazole and ivermectin or abamectin against late immature liver fluke (Fasciola hepatica) in cattle. Veterinary Parasitology 161 (2009), 133-137. This paper reports variable efficacies for two different pour-on triclabendazole products. The efficacies varied from 73-78% (winter) to 90-92% (spring) to 99.6% (summer).   This and other results are summarised in an issue of WormMail:  https://wormmailinthecloud.wordpress.com/2017/04/10/wrml-2017-04-10-flukicides-summaries-efficacies-synergistic-combinations-resistance-management/

Smeal MG (1995). ‘Parasites of Cattle’, Veterinary Review No.32, The University of Sydney, Post- Graduate Foundation in Veterinary Science, pp. 358.  (Section on pages 30-31).

Buying sheep – ‘health hazards’

An older (May 2007) DPI Primefact by Plant and Seaman: “Buying sheep can be a health hazard”  https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0017/142217/buying-sheep-can-be-a-health-hazard.pdf

A newer one (September 2017): Buying sheep – the general biosecurity
duty, and how to avoid health hazards. September 2017, Primefact 1602, first edition
Animal Biosecurity and Welfare. (NSW DPI)  https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/739107/Buying-sheep-the-general-biosecurity-duty-and-how-to-avoid-health-hazards.pdf

The latter one is OK with respect to resistant worms, but the suggestion of a quarantine drench like ML+BZ+LEV in many cases won’t cut it these days (in AU at least) – also there is no mention of resistance to flukicides? (in the Sept. 2017 edition; about to be updated) …. BUT...the Primefact does refer readers to another DPI Primefact  (and also to WormBoss ) for more information.

The other DPI Primefact: Quarantine drenching – don’t import
resistant sheep worms. August 2016 PrimeFact 477 Second edition.

NSW DPI and Synthetic Biology

 Uploaded (to YouTube) by Deborah Hailstones (NSW DPI) on Oct 25, 2017.

“DPI’s role in Australian node of groundbreaking international project in synthetic biology, ‘Yeast 2.0’, led by Macquarie University”.”Interviews with key stakeholders:
Dr Phil Wright – Chief Scientist, DPI
Prof Sakkie Pretorius – Deputy Vice Chancellor Research, MQU
Distinguished Professor Ian Paulsen – Director, Synthetic Biology Lab, MQU
Dr Hugh Goold – NSW DPI Postdoctoral Research Scientist, MQU
Dr Natalie Curach – Synthetic Biology Development Consultant, MQU
Dr Deborah Hailstones – Manager Science Strategy, CSB (Chief Scientist Branch, DPI)

[Note – you can also make the captions (interviewee names) visible by clicking on the settings tab ( bottom right) in the video and select ‘Subtitles: English – Camtasia’]. CSB is currently trying to master video-editing to embed the captions more smoothly!)”

Graham Centre 2018 Calendar of Events

2018 Graham Centre Calendar of Events

The Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation at Wagga Wagga NSW is an alliance between Charles Sturt University & NSW Department of Primary Industries.

Blood and plasma donation: effect on aerobic and anaerobic responses in exhaustive, severe-intensity exercise

PubMed – NCBI: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23668764

(Good) culture beats strategy

‘Culture beats strategy every day’. Thus said Simon Smith (Secretary, NSW Dept of Industry) recently. (Video message on the NSW DPI intranet)

OK, we’ve all heard it before (it’s an ancient concept, not a modern invention), but it’s worth pondering. To clarify, Simon added: it’s not so much what you will say you will do, but what you actually do. ‘Walk the talk’, I guess.

I was trying to think of an example.  Maybe the All Blacks?  Is it their game plans (strategy) that is most significant, or their culture?

Tip for the Melbourne Cup??

A (cynical? worldly-wise?) senior colleague recently told me: “If there is a horse called ‘Self Interest’ in a race, always back ‘Self Interest'”.

Aussie bush etiquette

Aussie Bush etiquette-frm kq 2017-11

Digital Resource Lifespan



SL, Armidale,  Mon 6 Nov 2017

‘without fear or favour’

Advertisements: this WordPress blog is paid for by ads. I have no control over them. I hope they are OK for WRML readers.



NSW DPI scientists


NSW DPI scientists

“DPI researchers represent the largest primary industry research group in Australia. Covering more than 50 disciplines, they have earned a reputation for scientific excellence, being ranked in the top 1% of research institutes in agricultural science and in plant and animal science globally.”

Source: Dr Philip Wright, Chief Scientist, NSW DPI. October 2017


SL, Armidale 31 Oct 2017

WRML.2017-10-30. Sawford-horse worms.lyssavirus.candidates-parasitology-CSU.flock and herd health.etc

In this issue:

  • Dr Sawford on horse worms
  • Australian bat lyssavirus
  • Are you interested in Veterinary Parasitology? -A/Prof Woodgate, CSU
  • Flock and Herd Health – 2017 Autumn edition of case studies
  • Value of NSW extensive livestock industries
  • NSW DPI scientists
  • NSW DPI and Postie Bike Challenge
  • Australian Wool Supply Chain
  • Farm Biosecurity – some resources
  • Zoonoses – animal diseases that can infect people
  • Cost of pest animals in Australia
  • Animal Health Australia – new biannual publication
  • National Ag Day – 21 st November
  • VetLinkSQL – interesting apps, for a vet
  • How to Check Whether Your Web Connections are Secure
  • Mulesing
  • Bafflegab


Dr Sawford on horse worms

Back in 2015, I did a summary of the AAEP (American Association of Equine Practitioners) guidelines regarding horse worm control, which are quite a change from the bad old days when every horse (apart, perhaps, from those extensively grazed) was treated frequently/regularly, regardless. (The old approach to horse worm control was to kill S. vulgaris worms before they could produce eggs and contaminate pasture. This required treatment every two months (it took ~ 2 months for eggs to reappear after treatment).

My summary is on the long side, a bit like Tolstoy’s ‘War and Peace’. Here it is: https://wormmailinthecloud.wordpress.com/2015/03/12/wrml-2015-03-12-get-up-to-date-on-horse-worms-other/

With permission, I here attach a PDF version of Dr Kate Sawford’s PowerPoint on horse worms. The section on worms begins ~ page 5. Kate is the LLS District Veterinarian located at Braidwood, NSW.  Sawford Kate – worm control horses 201611 – horse days 1

Being a PowerPoint presentation, it is necessarily cryptic in places, but still very useful. For more info, you can see my summary of the AAEP guidelines, or the guidelines themselves. I think Kate’s summary is good/helpful, not least for mature persons such as myself with declining mental acuity and attention span.

Australian bat lyssavirus – information for the public


More information on flying foxes (thank-you, JL)http://www.nwc.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Flying_Fox_Article_June2010.pdf

Lyssavirus (from the Greek λύσσα lyssa “rage, fury, rabies” and the Latin vīrus). Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyssavirus

(Friends in Armidale now have a camp of several hundred flying foxes in the trees in their backyard).

Are you interested in Veterinary Parasitology?

From A/Professor Dr Rob Woodgate, CSU Wagga Wagga:

“The School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences at Charles Sturt University, in
Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, is looking for two exceptional candidates to
undertake two new and exciting research projects.

Both candidates will be expected to enrol in and complete a Doctor of
Philosophy or Doctor of Veterinary Studies at CSU.

One project will investigate the impact on industry and diagnosis and control of
Fasciola hepatica in Australian sheep and cattle.

The other project involves a multi-institution collaboration that could
revolutionise the control of gastrointestinal helminths of Australian livestock.

It is envisaged that a tax free annual stipend of at least $35,000 plus
accompanying operating funds will be available for up to three and a half years
for each project.

Both projects include excellent opportunities for industry and international
research collaboration and possibly international travel.

Considerable mentoring and support will be provided for both positions, and
both candidates will also be involved in commercial veterinary parasitology
diagnostic work within the CSU Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

Potentially interested applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Dr Rob
Woodgate (rwoodgate@csu.edu.au or 0477 431 045) for additional information.”

Flock and Herd Health – 2017 Autumn edition of case studies

Case studies from Local Land Services District Vets, oft in cooperation with vet. pathologists from DPI (notably Dr Erika Bunker, formerly of DPI). Interesting.


In this issue: Bacterial meningitis in a ram; high prevalence mild dermatophilosis (lumpy wool) in unweaned merino lambs following a wet spring; ovine segmental axonopathy in two fine wool merino flocks; phalaris sudden death in lambs; two outbreaks of scabby mouth (orf infection) in small ruminants on the Central Tablelands of NSW.

Value of NSW extensive livestock industries

“The NSW cattle herd totals 5.6 million head (21% of national); from 24,662 farm businesses (37% of national) with a total gross value (2015 calendar year) of $2.92 billion (20% of national). Nationally, a further 76,860 staff are employed in beef enterprises, and 53,200 staff are employed in the meat processing sector.

The annual value of the NSW sheep and lamb industry (2015 calendar year), excluding wool is $753.6 million (23% of the $3.29 billion national industry). The annual value of the NSW Wool clip (2015 calendar year) is $890 million (33% of the $2.67 billion national clip). With 27 abattoirs in NSW, 7,568 people are employed and average daily kill of sheep in June 2015 was 33,425.

Nationally, the value of goat meat and exports in 2015-16 grew to $236.7 million, an increase of 76% since 2010-11. NSW goat production underpins this export industry – it is estimated that at least 68% of goats being processed in eastern Australia are sourced from NSW. In 2016, there were 5.8 million goats in the central and western NSW aerial survey monitoring zone, which covers approximately 450,000 km2.

Overall in NSW, approximately 21,000 farms are involved in livestock production for meat and wool.”    Source: NSW DPI.

NSW DPI scientists

“DPI researchers represent the largest primary industry research group in Australia. Covering more than 50 disciplines, they have earned a reputation for scientific excellence, being ranked in the top 1% of research institutes in agricultural science and in plant and animal science globally.”  Source: Dr Philip Wright, Chief Scientist, NSW DPI.

NSW DPI and Postie Bike Challenge

postie bike challenge

One of the senior managers (Kate Lorimer-Ward*) in DPI Agriculture completed the recent Postie Bike Challenge. http://www.postiebikechallenge.org/

The 2017 event was a trip of extremes,  heading west from Brisbane, then passing through the dry, arid and hot landscape of White Cliffs.  Roads varied from sealed roads to gravel outback roads, some deeply corrugated for miles, with sandy ridges and bulldust and grit added for good measure. The weather ranged from hot and dry, to cold and wet. For even more variety, riders traversed snow covered mountains later in the event, prior to the final stage through scenic rainforests to finish in Melbourne.

3000 kms in 10 days.

* A/ Deputy Director General, DPI Agriculture, NSW Department of Primary Industries.

Australian Wool Supply Chain

Australian Wool Supply Chain 2017-10-frm AWI

PDF:  Australian Wool Supply Chain 20171024085535   Source: AWI

Farm Biosecurity – some resources

Some resources on biosecurity, in no particular order:

What is biosecurity?   From LBN and ‘Farm Biosecurity’:

“Biosecurity is the management of risks to the economy, the environment, and the community, of pests and diseases entering, emerging, establishing or spreading.

Biosecurity can be implemented off-shore, at the border and on-farm. By implementing the recommended measures in your day-to-day operations, you will improve your own biosecurity and that of your region, while minimising production losses and unnecessary costs.”

(No doubt this definition can be tweaked in different ways, just like the definition of ‘zoonosis’)

Happily biosecurity experts these days are less inclined to overlook the ‘quiet achievers’, parasites, which, more often than not, are ranked number one among health issues affecting grazing livestock.

Zoonoses – animal diseases that can infect people

Some references to get you started:

NSW DPI:  http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/biosecurity/animal/humans   <<   Good stuff!

Merck Vet Man: http://www.merckvetmanual.com/public-health/zoonoses/zoonotic-diseases     <<Also good, and has a global perspective

A key message on prevention: minimise risk, with basic hygiene being very important. eg see:   http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/biosecurity/animal/humans/general-information/zoonoses-transmission

Cost of pest animals in Australia


Animal Health Australia – new biannual publication

“AHA is launching a new bi-annual publication and we would love to feature your work!

“The publication will include the latest agricultural and animal health news and showcase the achievements of AHA and our Members and stakeholders. If you have an article about your work, research or innovations in animal health, a personal profile or opinion piece, we would love to see it!”


National Ag Day – 21 st November

https://www.agday.org.au/    ” All told, agriculture employs more than 1.6 million Australians – in jobs like retail, logistics, technology and science. There’s much more to the story of Australian farming than meets the eye. Get the facts about Aussie agriculture here: https://www.agday.org.au/farm-facts

national ag day

VetLinkSQL – interesting apps, for a vet

They are a Kiwi company:  http://www.vetlinksql.com/

Maybe I am being nice to our trans-Tasman cousins seeing the Wallabies beat the All Blacks recently (21.10.17)  🙂

How to Check Whether Your Web Connection’s Secure

https://spreadprivacy.com/secure-web-connection/  (DuckDuckGo)


Named after JHW  Mules, 1876-1946, South Australian sheep raiser who first practised this procedure’ – Macquarie Dictionary.   Also see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mulesing

Not to be confused with ‘muesling’ (Swiss German), the act of eating muesli (often with milk), which is not known to prevent flystrike (myiasis), despite the various magical properties of this breakfast food. Indeed muesling in humans may actually predispose to flystrike, if one is severely lactose intolerant. Muesling in sheep may also have untoward consequences, due to the possibility of ruminal acidosis, and consequent diarrhoea (‘scouring’), and excoriation of the perineum.      (Joke)

myia (Greek) = fly



MEANING: noun: Obscure, pompous, or incomprehensible language, such as bureaucratic jargon.

Coined by Milton A. Smith, assistant general counsel for the US Chamber of Commerce, in 1952. From baffle, perhaps from Scots bauchle (to denounce) + gab, perhaps of imitative origin.  Source: A.Word.A.Day with Anu Garg.    (Thanks, JL)


SL, Armidale NSW, 30 October 2017

e&oe. No conflicts of interest to declare.

31 October – 500th anniversary of The Reformation.