WRML.Sheep numbers by location – Australia

To WormMail list.

Sheep numbers by location – Australia

‘No parasites in this WormMail, just hosts.

A colleague sent me this (thanks Alex): I thought it was interesting/useful. You may think so too.

(Used here with permission from the most important person in MLA (He rides a BMW. Er ist sehr klug!) 🙂 ).

I was surprised at the sheep numbers in Victoria: I thought they had more.

Victorian (‘Mexican’) readers of WRML may say they go more for quality rather than numbers.

Western Australian sheep are heavier than New England sheep. (Full of sand; and resistant Teladorsagia).

To think we once had > 150 million sheep… (and they had the vote).(Bring back gerrymandering, and a better deal for regional Australia 🙂

On that note: what’s the problem with political jokes?

They tend to get elected.

Kiwi colleagues might say that the average IQ in Australia has gone down with declining sheep numbers. But, there are a lot of Kiwis in Australia these days… 🙂

Don’t forget the NEW WormBoss. www.wormboss.com.au Constructive comments? Use the feedback form please. Thanks.


SL (it’s the caffeine talking…)

#end font=Georgia. This email is malware free (for those who use PCs rather than Macs 🙂


Not sent from a smart phone (iPhone or Android).

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Sheep-Numbers Map_as at June 2011.pdf

WRML. The NEW WormBoss. MLA cattle parasite atlas. Liver fluke.

To: WormMail Mailing list.

A follow up note to participants at last week’s NSW DPI Profarm Worm Egg Counting Course.

Some of this info may be of use/interest.


P.S. My apologies to DPI livestock officers on this list affected by recent DPI restructuring. It may seem like like these continuing WormMails signify it is ‘business as usual’, but I am very mindful that, as professional as you are (as witness Jason Siddell and Trevor Rose at the recent cattle health filed day), it is very difficult to act as if it is.


Hi WEC Course Participants

Further to the course on Wednesday, here is some more info.

1. New WormBoss. See below.  This is a great resource and it has been updated/expanded.   www.wormboss.com.au

2. Remember how I majored on the roundworm life cycle?  (‘If you know and understand the life-cycle, you know worm control’).   There is a nicely detailed life cycle in the NEW Wormboss, and there is a table which includes ecological information on important worms (temp requirements, longevity etc)

I found this by typing ‘lifecycle”, into the search box (even though I know it is located in the ‘regional programs’ information):

See…..     http://www.wormboss.com.au/programs/tablelands-slopes/liver-fluke-control/roundworm-life-cycle-and-larval-survival.php

Worm ecology info?  :   See…..

3. More cattle worm info.   The DPI Primefact is OK, but brief and needs a bit of updating (it’s on my to-do list)

Another good resource is the cattle parasite atlas at the MLA website.

It’s sometimes hard to find all those goodies on the MLA website (sorry Johann), so I’ll include the URL (web address).

Guidelines on strategic programs for different regions are just that: guidelines.   You might think about and test what you are doing for cattle worm control from time to time.

e.g. test to see if there is an economic benefit from routinely drenching all cattle every year (or more often) for roundworms.

Are you drenching your weaners too much or too little?

Do you know those drenches work? And, if they don’t, is it because of the route of administration, and/or due to resistance?

4. Fluke egg counts.   I know some of you were disappointed to learn that the McMaster technique we teach, using saturated salt solution (NaCl) does not work for fluke eggs, as they are too heavy.   Even if it did, you would then have the problem of differentiating liver fluke from stomach fluke eggs, for example (they are quite similar in appearance and colour).

There are some heavier solutions (eg various Zn salts) that are dense enough to float fluke eggs, but there are problems with this approach, hence the development of the sedimentation technique.  (You could also use mercury based solutions if you want to poison yourself and corrode your equipment).

The more adventurous and time-rich among you might like to look at this FlukeFinder.      http://www.flukefinder.com/        This was brought to my attention by my Qld Colleague, Maxine Lyndal-Murphy. (Unfortunately for Qld and the rest of us, she is one of the many casualties from govt. cuts). (I mentioned in yesterday’s WormMail that Maxine is one of the people behind WormBoss).

FlukeFinder uses the sedimentation technique (or something similar) that I was telling you is standard in AUS labs for counting fluke eggs.   I have no experience of this, so I can’t comment  on how good it is. (You’re on your own).

Frankly I think a better use of your time/money would be to send samples off to a lab for fluke egg counts (unless you want to develop fluke egg counting as a hobby in lieu of fishing or time at the beach).

Unlike roundworm egg counts, you don’t have to do fluke egg counts very often   (perhaps three times a year max??   eg late autumn, early Spring, summer; and perhaps after a fluke drench (28 days after) to test flukicide efficacy. (If I am wrong about this, fluke guru Dr Joe Boray will tell me in due course. (I might have to kick him off the WormMail mailing list  🙂   :-).

There are other tests for liver fluke.   There are blood tests.   See here:

And there is a ‘faecal fluke antigen test’. See here:  http://www.csu.edu.au/vetservices/vdl/services    (I could not find a direct link to this fluke test. You may have to email vdl@csu.edu.au   for more information).
I hope this helps.




Keith Urban?

Further to the reference to Keith Urban (Country and Western singer; spouse of Nicole Kidman),  one WormMail reader suggested Keith’s name should be Keith Rural?

‘Further demonstration that WormMail has a higher class of readership.  🙂

WRML. WormFaxNSW Oct 2012 plus more on the NEW WormBoss

To: WormMail mailing list.

The October issue of WormFaxNSW is online.


There have been some high egg counts from different parts of the state (NSW), despite a dry spring in some areas. Don’t guess, WormTest.

For more comments on what is happening in your patch (in NSW), check out the latest WormBoss news as well (on the NEW WormBoss website):

For those of you who don’t subscribe to WormBoss News, also see this month’s feature article:

Look through WormFax while you listen to the WormBoss song (yes, it is on the NEW WormBoss website).

(Keith Urban etc etc have nothing on Arthur Le Feuvre. It’s lucky for Keith that Nicole didn’t know about Arthur).).

After you look through WormFax, subscribe to WormBoss if you haven’t already (Subscribe at the WormBoss homepage).

More info on the NEW WormBoss: https://wormmailinthecloud.wordpress.com/2012/11/23/wrml-the-new-wormboss-is-here-wormboss-com-au/

Today’s Thought:

What if there were no hypothetical questions?





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WRML. The NEW WormBoss is here – wormBoss.com.au

To WormMail mailing list. The NEW WormBoss is here – wormBoss.com.au


The new WormBoss was launched yesterday, 21 November 2012, seven years after WormBoss Mk I kicked off in 2005.

The new WormBoss website has new and improved features:

· regional worm control programs

· Drench Decision Guides

· drench searches

· stand-alone website

Yes, WormBoss has returned to its original home: www.wormboss.com.au

‘Worms information’ and ‘Tests and Tools’ have been updated and of course the monthly WormBoss News will continue with monthly and locally relevant updates and more feature articles.

WormBoss Worm Control Programs

Eight regional programs cover the main sheep production areas of Australia and were developed by local parasitologists, veterinarians, consultants and scientists with extensive knowledge and experience in sheep worm control.

Each program takes a ‘what to do and when to do it’ approach and deals with

* grazing management and preparation of low worm-risk paddocks

* breeding worm-resistant sheep

* when to WormTest and when to drench

* slowing development of drench resistance

The practical, proven and cost-effective strategies help you make a long-term worm control program for your property that puts you in control and not constantly reaching for a drench gun.

On the web site choose ‘Your Program’ from the main menu and then choose your region. There is a summary for each region plus pages on each topic. You can also download or print a full PDF copy of each program.

Drench Decision Guides

The Drench Decision Guides (DDGs) are based on an earlier guide created by Dr Lewis Kahn (the current WormBoss Team leader) and colleagues, but have been further developed by local experts as well as the national WormBoss Technical Team. The DDGs supplement the long-term programs by providing a day-to-day tool to help you decide:

* when a drench should be given

* what length of protection is warranted

* when to next WormTest the sheep or review the DDG again

There is a Drench Decision Guide for each of the eight WormBoss regions.

On the WormBoss home page, choose ‘Solve your current worm problem’, or choose the Drench Decision Guides button in the left menu on other pages.

New drench searches

“The right drench at the right time”.

The DDGs and the programs help you with timing, and the new drench search section – as well as information in the regional programs – helps you to choose the right drench.

How ‘WormBoss Drenches’ helps you choose a suitable drench: search by

* worm type and length of protection

* drench group, then active ingredient

* less important worms and other parasites

* drench product name

Most critical is knowing what drenches work on your property.

Do a DrenchTest every 2-3 years and DrenchCheck-Day10s in between times to keep tabs on how well your drenches are working. The most expensive drench is the one that doesn’t work.

The Tests and Tools section has step-by-step instruction on these tests and more.

Try out the new site and see how it can help you keep in control of worms

Forward this email to neighbours and friends who run sheep, as well as advisors and others in the sheep industry. Encourage them all to Subscribe to WormBoss.


We have tried to get the NEW WormBoss right before making it available. Inevitably however there will be glitches and mistakes. We want constructive feedback.

Please help us to make WormBoss even better by making use of the FeedBack link (Your Feedback) on the bottom of the front page. (But ‘trolls’ needn’t respond 🙂

The WormBoss Team

See: ‘Acknowledgements’ on home page.

The WormBoss Technical Team is made up of experts from all around Australia.

The wider team consists of many more advisors and contributors from all sectors, all around the country. Many thanks for your invaluable support and contributions. (See lists of contributors on the web page)

The founding/first team leader and pioneer was Arthur Le Feuvre. (Still actively involved. Recently turning 70 has not held him back). The original idea for WormBoss, as it came to be known, sprung from the minds of Arthur, Maxine Lyndal-Murphy, Deb Maxwell and others. (Another win for Queensland :-).

Arthur was succeeded by Rob Woodgate, formerly of the WA Department of Agriculture and Food, now with CSU Wagga Wagga

The current team leader is Lewis Kahn, A/Prof at UNE Armidale and also a consultant.

So, Team Leaders have come from three states. We are a democratic/inclusive bunch.

Brown Besier (WA Dept Ag) had an oversight role (CRC program manager or leader) throughout, as well as being actively involved at or near ground level (where the infective larvae are).

Financial and other support of course came from the Sheep CRC, an Australian Government initiative, including CRC member organisations/participants, and AWI as well as other organisations (Animal Health Australia, Elders, CRC, Landmark).




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WRML. Two illuminating events coming up!

In ascending order of importance:

1. The spring equinox (in the southern hemisphere) Sunday, 23 Sept., 00:49 AEST

Increasing day length; more light. (except perhaps in the Land of the Long White Cloud 🙂

2. Launch of the NEW WormBoss…just days away

Shedding even more light on sheep worm control.




WRML. Napfix, Hendra vaccine and A Vet’s life

To WormMail mailing list. WRML.201211.05. Napfix, Hendra vaccine and A Vet’s life


‘Napfix’, by Jurox, is a new triple active drench on the Australian market.

It is a liquid naphthalophos (NAP) combination drench for sheep containing naphthalophos, abamectin and albendazole.

Other non-macrocyclic lactone (ML) triple combinations, also based on the organophosphate, naphthalophos, include Bayer’s ‘Rametin Combo’ Twin Pack (NAP powder ready for on-farm mixing with ‘Combo’, a BZ+LEV liquid drench) and Virbac’s ‘Combat’, also a NAP powder ready for-on-farm mixing with various Virbac liquid combination drenches.

Pole Vault is another brand of NAP drench.

Another non-ML combination drench is Cooper’s ‘Colleague’, a proprietary liquid (double) combination with the OP pyraclofos and the BZ, albendazole.

As to ML-based triple or quadruple combinations, there are a few, including Triguard (Merial), Hatrick (Ancare), and Pyrimide (Novartis). All these are abamectin+BZ+LEV. Q-Drench is a quadruple combination by Jurox (abamectin+BZ+LEV+closantel).

If wanting a short-acting ML for use in sheep, abamectin (greater potency) is preferred over ivermectin.

Virbac also has its ‘triple active pack”. See: www.virbac.com.au ( I won’t put the full URL here as the Virbac website has horribly long URLs).

Bayer also has ‘Rametin ML’ Mix Pack (NAP powder + abamectin-based liquid drench: ready to mix). [CORRECTION: No longer available]

For a complete list of products, see PUBCRIS at www.apvma.gov.au or the WormBoss website (The new website is going to be released soon. It is undergoing testing by the WormBoss Team: it looks really good).

The earlier you start to use combination broad-spectrum drenches, the greater the likely benefits (in terms of efficacy and longevity (length of useful life) of the constituents).

Apart from that, you may have no other option. (See attached PDF). If you think only the New England region of NSW has significant resistance problems, “you’re dreamin’!”.

Combinations of course are also very important when it comes to keeping resistant sheep worms out by ‘quarantine’ drenching. The optimal currently in Australia is monepantel (Zolvix) used concurrently with not less than three other actives, all of which are unrelated ( ie all from different drench groups/ families). e.g. drench race full of sheep with Zolvix, followed by one of the products listed above. If you think this is ‘over the top’, see the attached PDF.

(“So, you spent $1000 on that ram, but $3 for quarantine drenching is too much?”)

BZ=Benzimidazole (Valbazen etc) LEV=levamisole (Nilverm etc)

The most expensive drench

…the one that doesn’t work.

Hendra Vaccine Released Equivac HeV Vaccine for Horses (Pfizer)



A Vet’s Life

Someone asked me recently what vet graduates get paid.

This and other matters are addressed in this article in The Age:





Nielsen R.20121018.sheep drench resistance New England NSW 2012-SUMMARY SLIDE[10].pdf