Master of Science (MS)


Animal Science (Animal, Dairy, and Poultry Sciences)

Document Type



Gastrointestinal nematode parasites cause extensive damage to small ruminants, and Haemonchus contortus is a major concern to production. In the past, small ruminants were dewormed at regular intervals and control methods were based primarily on the use of anthelmintics. At present, anthelmintic resistance has been reported worldwide and has developed into a serious problem for small ruminant management programs. In view of this, alternate control methods are needed. One alternative method is the use of copper oxide wire particles (COWP). Three independent trials were conducted during Spring, Summer, and Fall of 2008. Two trials evaluated the effect of COWP in food pellets in reducing H. contortus infection in crossbred ewes and Suffolk lambs. The third trial compared the effect of Copasure® COWP with that of an industrial-grade COWP. Trials consisted of similar protocols where ewes and lambs were allocated into groups based on fecal egg count (FEC). Copasure® COWP in feed pellets were fed to ewes at mid-lactation when FEC increased to over 1000 eggs per gram, and to individual lambs when FAMACHA© score was 4/5. Ewe/lamb infection was monitored weekly by FEC and blood packed cell volume. Results of Trial 1 indicated that Copasure® COWP in feed pellets was effective in reducing the peri-parturient rise in ewes, based on FEC. Trial 2 indicated that Copasure® COWP in feed pellets was just as good as the levamisole/albendazole treatment when the FAMACHA System© was used to determine when to treat lambs. Trial 3 indicated that Copasure® COWP effectively reduced parasite infection while the industrial-grade COWP did not. The results from these trials demonstrated that the use of Copasure® COWP in feed pellets reduced H. contortus infection and may be useful alone or when used with other control methods.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Miller, James