Saturday, June 23, 2007

June 22 - Day 13

KEEDYSVILLE, MD, 6:30 a.m. -- The goats were worked for the first time on Friday, June 22. FAMACHA© eye anemia and body condition scores (BCS) were determined by Susan Schoenian. None of the goats required deworming. This was to be expected, as all were dewormed with moxidectin (Cydectin®) upon arrival to the test site on June 9. FAMACHA© and body condition scores improved slightly from the initial scores.

Mary Beth Bennett from West Virginia University works the goats in the handling system The goats were re-weighed. For the purpose of determining growth performance (average daily gain/ADG), the June 22nd weight will be utilized. The first 13 days of the test will be considered an adjustment period, as the goats adjusted not only to a new place and each other, but a new diet. However, most of the goats did gain weight during the first 13 days; only 8 lost weight. The group average was + 0.175 lbs. per day.

The goats will be worked next on Friday, July 6. FAMACHA© and body condition scores will be determined. Goats scoring 4 or 5 on the FAMACHA© scale will be dewormed, while those scoring 1 or 2 will not be dewormed. The decision to deworm goats with FAMACHA© scores of 3 will be based on additional factors, such as BCS, ADG, and previous scores. Few, if any, of the goats should require deworming. Last year, the need for deworming peaked on August 4.

plentiful grazing (image taken 6/13/07)On July 6, fecal samples will also be collected for determination of fecal egg counts at day 28. Fecal egg counts for the June 9th collection ranged from 0 to 5,600, for an average of 634 eggs per gram of feces. Unfortunately, samples could not be obtained from 9 of the goats.

Fecal egg counts (FEC) are a heritable trait. They are an indication of parasite resistance, while FAMACHA© scores (and packed cell volumes/blood hematocrit) are an indication of parasite resilience (or tolerance). Delaware State University (Dr. Dahlia Jackson) is performing the fecal egg counts for this year's test.

goats find shade under the work platformThough rainfall continues to be below average in Western Maryland, grazing is plentiful. The last few days have been mild but the weather is expected to get hotter.

Download June 22nd, day-13 report (PDF)