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Vet Parasitol. 1996 Oct 25;65(3-4):283-7.

Seasonal pattern of inhibition of Ostertagia ostertagi in calves in northeast Mississippi.

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  • 1College of Veterinary Medicine, Mississippi State University, MS 39762-9825, USA.


The composition of, and seasonal changes in, populations of gastrointestinal parasites of calves in northeast Mississippi were determined for 10 months post-weaning. After weaning on 15 October, 20 mixed breed beef steers were grazed together on a 4 ha fescue/bermudagrass pasture. From November through August of the following year, two of the calves were removed each month for necropsy and counting of gastrointestinal nematodes. Eight species of worms were found: Haemonchus placei, Ostertagia ostertagi, Trichostrongylus axei, Bunostomum phlebotomum, Cooperia spp., Trichostrongylus colubriformis, Oesophagostomum spp., and Trichuris ovis. During all months, Ostertagia ostertagi and Cooperia spp. combined comprised at least 89% of gastrointestinal nematode burdens. Cooperia spp. represented 92.6% of the total worm burden of calves in November but declined to about 56% in January and February. From March through August, Ostertagia ostertagi comprised at least 79% of the worms from calves. Numbers of inhibited Ostertagia ostertagi increased markedly from February to March and remained at high levels prior to resumption of development in August. The proportion of Trichostrongylus axei remained about 4% throughout the year, but the highest numbers were recorded in the summer months. Other species were minor components of the worm population. These data indicate that with respect to Ostertagia ostertagi, northeast Mississippi can be considered a summer inhibition zone.

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