Saturday, July 19, 2014

"Parasite Challenge" Phase Over

The "parasite challenge" phase of the 2014 test is over. During the final two weeks of the parasite challenge, FAMACHA© scores continued to increase and on-average, the goats did not gain any weight. 

For the 77 goats in the test, weight gain ranged from -7.0 to 3.8 lbs. and averaged -0.06 ± 2.2 lbs. The median gain was also -0.06 lbs. Average daily gain (ADG) ranged from -0.500 to 0.271 lbs. per day and averaged -0.045 ± 0.159 lbs. per day. The median ADG was -0.043 lbs. per day.

For the past two weeks, the top-gaining bucks were #'s 402 and 444, consigned by Craig Adams (IL) and Jodie Majanscik (KY), respectively. All of the bucks in Linda Heise's (PA) consignment gained weight.

All of Linda Heise's (PA)
bucks have gained weight.

During the parasite challenge phase of the test (day 0-42), ADG ranged from -0.243 to 0.229 lbs. per day and averaged 0.011 ± 0.086 lbs. per day. The median ADG was 0.012 lbs. per day.

The top-performing buck was #479, a purebred Kiko consigned by Jill Zink (IN). The Zink buck has not required deworming.  Its highest FEC was 1546 epg. All the goats in the Patrick (GA) and Heise consignments gained weight during the parasite challenge.

Worsening FAMACHA© scores
FAMACHA© scores ranged from 1 to 4 and averaged 2.5 ± 0.7, compared to 2.3 ± 0.8 two weeks ago. Nine goats required deworming and were treated with either levamisole (Prohibit® @ 3 ml/50 lbs.) or moxidectin (Cydectin® @ 2 ml/11 lbs.).

To help stimulate growth, all goats were given a 0.5 g bolus of copper oxide wire particles (COWP). For this reason, goats with FAMACHA© scores of 3 were not dewormed with a chemical dewormer. COWPs have been proven to be effective at reducing barber pole worm infections in kids and lambs. Fecal egg counts from July 17 and July 31 will be compared to determine the effectiveness of the COWPs.

Body condition and coat condition scores remained relatively unchanged.  Dag scores and fecal consistency scores improved slightly, as fewer goats had active cases of scours. Some goats scour when they are moved to fresh forage.

Growth Challenge
The "growth challenge" phase of the test has begun. The bucks now have access to a paddock of Sunn Hemp and Millet. Sunn Hemp is a fast-growing, warm season, annual legume. A forage sample will be taken to determine the nutrient content of the Sunn Hemp. The goats also have access to a paddock of orchardgrass, that was mowed and has not been grazed for more than 60 days.

Start of "growth challenge"
Grazing Sunn Hemp and Millet

Pooled samples will continue to be collected to determine the nutrient content of the diet the goats are consuming. A sample is collected after several days of grazing a fresh paddock. Three samples have been submitted to the Grazingland Animal Nutrition Lab (in Texas) to determine diet quality during the parasite-challenge phase.

Download July 17 (d-42) Report