Some aspects of nematode infection in pigs from small herds
Two traditionally maintained, small herds from southern Poland, with 8 and 12 sows, respectively, were surveyed coprologically during 2006-2007. In one of the herds, while deworming a group of sows with levamisole, faecal samples were collected on Day -7, Day 0 (the day of treatment) and Day 10, in order to assess the therapeutic effect of the drug. Coprological investigation was performed also in 26 fatteners originating from other small farms and slaughtered in a local abattoir, with their intestines washed through for the presence of roundworms. In both herds examined, Ascaris suum and Oesophagostomum spp. were prevalent, whilst Trichuris suis appeared only very rarely. Mainly fatteners, replacement gilts and young sows were highly infected with A. suum. The roundworm occurrence in 2-3 week-old piglets, with the intensity of 300 eggs per gram of faeces (EPG), indicated the possibility of parasite transmission to offspring very early in age. The highest level of Oesophagostomum spp. infection was observed in sows, but weaners were also much affected. For the group of dewormed sows, the mean faecal egg count reduction (FECR) was estimated to be 77.1 - 80.4%, suggesting the presence of resistant nodular worms. A very high false-positive A. suum egg counts found in slaughtered animals (240 to 320 EPG) testified to a high contamination level of the environment of small piggeries, as well. Since the reciprocal transmission of parasites between pigs and poultry might occur, it implies that the flocks should be raised separately.
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