Annual expenses for worm infestations are thought to have run into millions of pounds in the UK, and it is for this reason that poultry producers have a strategic worming programme in place.
Dave Cunnah, pig and poultry manager with Janssen Animal Health, states that costs for the poultry farmer are higher than ever, especially when looking at the price of feed.
In a survey conducted by the SAC Veterinary Services avian health unit, worm eggs were found on 26 out of 27 flocks. Additionally, it was noted that unless free-range flocks are wormed every 12 weeks they stand a >80% chance of being infected.
“The last thing producers need is millions of mouths eroding the economics of poultrymeat and egg production,” said Cunnah.
He urged poultry producers to give worming a higher priority: “It should not be treated as a ‘last resort’ management option.”
Worm infections in birds can cause gut damage, reduce egg quality often at peak laying period and can sometimes cause death.