Now’s the time to be thinking of worming your pig herd, reminds ABN’s national pig specialist, Ian Watson, who warns of the cost implications of harbouring a worm burden.
The result of not treating your herd for intestinal worm infestations is a potentially impaired performance, he says. “Growth rates and feed conversion can be majorly affected, potentially dropping by 10-13% in individual pigs.”
Ian suggests that for every 0.1 change in feed conversion ratio (FCR) between 40 to 100kg live weight is equivalent to £1.50 per pig at todays feed prices or £3,450 per annum per 100 sows.
“The cost of including an in-feed wormer from ABN works out at around £1.25 per sow, which pales into insignificance compared to the potential financial loss at stake,” he says, adding that a further problem might be seen at the abattoir as a result of the migration of ascaris worm larvae (large round worm) causing liver condemnation as result of milk spot.
Ian recommends farmers speak to their vet to discuss a tailor made anthelmintic programme for their herd.
“At ABN we provide a bi-annual service of reminding customers on the value of in feed wormers by mailshot and at customer point of order through our customer support centre at Peterborough,” he says. “In most cases within a breeding herd treating the sow is usually sufficient to keep on top of any potential worm issue as cleaning up’ the sow will help improve the prospects of the piglet remaining worm free.
“Also, it’s a good practice for those producers buying in weaners to treat their pigs on arrival to ensure any worm burden does not drag down performance.”