Laboratories that do fecal testing
Fecal egg counting is a useful tool for small ruminant producers. Before and after fecal egg counts can be compared to determine the efficacy of anthelmintic (dewormer) treatment. Fecal egg counts can be used to monitor pasture contamination. Fecal egg counts can also be used to identify resistant and susceptible animals in the flock or herd. Fecal egg counts are less useful for diagnosing parasitism in individual animals.
Producers can learn to do their own fecal egg counts or they can submit samples to a parasitology laboratory for analysis. The table below lists public and private laboratories that do fecal egg counting. The labs may offer other testing, such as larvae ID. Fees are for in-state residents and do not reflect shipping costs. When having a fecal sample analyzed for egg content, be sure to ask for a quantitative analysis (fecal egg count, epg). A qualitative analysis (or simple fecal flotation) generally will not provide the information that you need to help control parasites on your farm. The table can be sorted alphabetically or by cost.
The modified McMaster procedure is the industry standard for fecal egg counting. It uses a counting chamber which enables a known volume of fecal suspension (2 x 0.15 ml) to be examined microscopically. Thus, if a known weight of feces and a known volume of flotation fluid are used to prepare the suspension, then the number of eggs per gram of faeces (e.p.g.) can be calculated.
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