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ARS Home » Plains Area » El Reno, Oklahoma » Grazinglands Research Laboratory » Forage and Livestock Production Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #317237

Title: High forage quality helps maintain resilience to gastrointestinal parasites in sheep and goats

item Turner, Kenneth - Ken

Submitted to: Miscellaneous Publishing Information Bulletin
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/14/2015
Publication Date: 6/1/2015
Citation: Turner, K.E. 2015. High forage quality helps maintain resilience to gastrointestinal parasites in sheep and goats. Timely Topic for the American Consortium for Small Ruminant Parasite Control. Available:!timelytopics/cstl.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Condensed tannins (CT) in browse and forage plants can have positive or negative effects on livestock health and performance, depending on the type and concentration of CT present in the diet. Historically, bloating in ruminants was reduced or eliminated when grazing legumes that contained CT. Condensed tannins also have anthelmintic (deworming) properties that can help control gastrointestinal parasites in ruminants. Addition of browse and forages plants containing CT to diets of goats and sheep often results in a reduction of internal parasite worm burden and fecal egg count in these animals. In addition, when total CT concentration in browse and forage is less than 4% of the total dry matter intake by animals, the CT helps protect protein from extensive degradation in the rumen thereby increasing the quantity of protein reaching the small intestine. This extra protein can help support the immune system to combat gastrointestinal parasites infection and improve animal performance. Even though the crude protein, organic matter digestibility, and CT concentration of the growing points (which included the new leaves and immature stems) of browse shrubs [autumn olive (Elaeagnus umbellata Thunb.), Morrow’s honeysuckle (Lonicera morowii Gray), and multiflora rose (Rosa multiflora Thunb.)] varied over the growing season, these browse shrubs were considered of high nutritive value for goats. Allowing access to browse shrubs containing CT and/or using forage plants containing CT can help manage gastrointestinal parasites in grazing goats and sheep.