Liver Fluke in Sheep
Essential Facts about Liver Fluke in Sheep
Liver Fluke in sheep is a serious and complex disease caused by a tiny flatworm (Fasciola Hepatica), which is most commonly found in wet, marshy or boggy areas, or following unusually wet weather. Fluke also requires an intermediate host: a tiny water snail, barely visible to the naked eye. Affected animals suffer from liver damage (fascioliasis) causing ill thrift and eventual death. Treatment depends on whether the fluke is adult or immature as different drugs are required for each stage. The high-risk time for Fluke is autumn and winter, and some years can be worse than others.
These two videos, written by Susan McKay of the Companion Consultancy and generously sponsored by Janssen Animal Health, explains the challenge that liver fluke poses to sheep, measures that can be taken by the smallholder to prevent its spread, protect their flock from disease, and how to treat affected sheep.
Fluke: that's a fact (Part 1)
Fluke: that's a fact (Part 2)
For further sheep welfare information, see 'Managing Your Flock for Peak Health', programme 2 in the series 'Sheep on Your Smallholding'.