UW researchers asking livestock producers what parasites plaguing livestock

Man wearing hat in pasture with cows behind him
Derek Scasta

University of Wyoming researchers are surveying Wyoming cattle and sheep producers about pests tormenting their livestock.

“The goal of this survey is to understand the current degree of external parasitism, prevalent external parasites, diagnosis, and treatment methods in Wyoming livestock as well as the financial impact on Wyoming producers,” said Derek Scasta, UW Extension rangeland specialist.

Parasites are broken down into six categories: flies, lice, ticks, mange, cattle pests and sheep pests.

“We would like to give Wyoming cattle and sheep producers the opportunity to help guide our livestock parasite research and extension efforts at UW and have created the survey,” said Scasta.

The survey is at bit.ly/externalparasites.

The survey was created by Craig Calkins, DVM, a Ph.D. student in rangeland ecology and watershed management at UW and a member of the Army veterinary corps, with input from extension sheep specialist Whit Stewart, Berit Bangoura and Myrna Miller, both in the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory, extension entomologist Scott Schell, and Scasta.

“The survey might look long, but it should allow for quick clicking through if a particular livestock or parasite species is not of interest or concern to you,” said Scasta.

The survey is part of Calkin’s research.

“Calkins has been focused primarily on external parasites of livestock with a particular focus on horn flies but also interest in other species parasitizing both cattle and sheep,” said Scasta.

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