Your management is crucial to parasite control and the amount you have to rely on drench. You need to get into the mind set of constantly evaluating the level of parasite challenge you are exposing your weaners to.
Ingestion of infective parasites is higher the lower you force weaners to graze
Areas of the farm that are constantly used for weaner grazing will build up higher levels of infective worms
Utilise new pastures for weaners and “cleaner” pastures e.g. post-baleage/silage harvest
Weaners that are post-rut weaned tend to need less drenching through autumn
Use other livestock to “clean up” pastures behind weaners. Integrated farming will play a huge part in sustainable parasite control in future
When to start drenching weaners and how often is entirely dependent on the level of parasite challenge on an individual farm. We do know that infective lungworm and gut worms will be on many deer farms in January and animal health issues can arise which necessitate that first drench being given in late January/early February. This is particularly so on the more intensive deer farming operations.
Local deer farmers who have had a drenching programme developed by the Veterinary Centre are now getting their animals away earlier at heavier weights.