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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Booneville, Arkansas » Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #302462

Title: Quebracho tannins aid in the control of Eimeria spp. and alter serum concentrations of trace minerals in lambs

item ACHARYA, MOHAN - University Of Arkansas
item Burke, Joan
item MILLER, JAMES - Louisiana State University
item TERRILL, THOMAS - Fort Valley State University
item Wood, Erin
item MUIR, JAMES - Texas A&M Agrilife

Submitted to: Veterinary Parasitology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/24/2020
Publication Date: 11/1/2020
Citation: Acharya, M., Burke, J.M., Miller, J.E., Terrill, T.H., Wood, E.L., Muir, J.P. 2020. Quebracho tannins aid in the control of Eimeria spp. and alter serum concentrations of trace minerals in lambs. Veterinary Parasitology.

Interpretive Summary: Coccidiosis is one of the most economically devastating parasitic diseases of small ruminants. This protozoan disease is an infection of Eimeria spp. of the gastrointestinal tract that can cause diarrhea, dehydration, inappetence, weight loss, and death of young animals. The condensed tannin containing forage, sericea lespedeza, reduced infection of Eimeria spp. in lambs, but it is unknown if the commercially available condensed tannin product, quebracho, has any effect against Eimeria spp. Scientists at USDA, ARS in Booneville, AR, Louisiana State University, Fort Valley State University, GA, and University of Arkansas determined that a supplement containing quebracho led to a faster reduction in fecal oocyst counts (a measure of coccidia infection) compared with control lambs; however, there was a reduction in some serum concentrations of trace minerals. This information is important to organic and conventional small ruminant producers, extension agents, and scientists.

Technical Abstract: The objective was to examine the effects of supplementary quebracho on control of coccidiosis in lambs and changes in serum concentrations of minerals. Naturally infected Katahdin lambs were weaned in mid-January 2013 at 87.8 ± 0.4 d of age. Six days later (day 0), lambs were moved to an area to graze wheat and rye pastures and were blocked by gender and randomly assigned (n = 10/dietary supplement) to receive 250 g/day of supplemental feed (16% CP) with or without 100 g/lamb quebracho daily between days 0 and 28. Fecal oocyst counts (FOC), fecal egg counts (FEC), fecal score (1 = solid pellets; 5 = slurry), dag score (degree of soiling around rear quarters; 1 = clean; 5 = heavily soiled), and blood packed cell volume (PCV) were determined on days 0, 7, 14, 21, and 28. Quebracho supplementation ended on day 28. FEC, FOC, dag and fecal score were determined on days 35 and 42 (or 7 and 14 days after treatment ended). Data were analyzed using mixed models; FOC and FEC data were log transformed. The FOC increased in control lambs by day 7, but were reduced within 7 days in lambs fed quebracho (diet × time, P < 0.001). During post-treatment, FOC of control lambs were reduced within 14 days, whereas that of quebracho fed lambs remained low (diet × time, P < 0.001). The FEC were similar between diets between days 0 and 28 (P = 0.19), but were lower by day 42 in control lambs (diet × time, P = 0.002). The PCV (P = 0.19) and fecal score (P = 0.42) were similar between groups, but dag score indicated greater soiling initially in quebracho fed lambs (diet × time, P = 0.01). Serum concentrations of cobalt, molybdenum, and selenium were reduced by day 28 in quebracho compared with control fed lambs. Body weight increased more in control compared with quebracho fed lambs (diet × time, P < 0.001), but was similar 14 days post-treatment (P = 0.55). Quebracho supplementation led to a faster reduction in FOC compared with control lambs, but clinical signs of coccidiosis were essentially the same between dietary groups. The supplementary condensed tannin led to a reduction in serum concentrations of cobalt, molybdenum and selenium, which could impact production and health of the animal.