FEC, FAMACHA©, and Weight

Virginia Tech researchers evaluated the relationship between fecal egg count (FEC), FAMACHA©, and body weight, using data from Katahdin rams in their annual ram test. Data from 576 rams from 23 contemporary groups were utilized. Fecal egg count and FAMACHA© were measured at 14-day intervals for 70 days from 2012 to 2018. Rams with FAMACHA© scores of 3 or greater were dewormed.

While increased fecal egg count was associated with reduced weight gain, it was not biological significant because of the small reduction in weight, due to the high plane of nutrition. Rams that were not dewormed weighed more than those that were. The difference increased steadily through day 56 but stabilized for the end of the test. A direct relationship between FAMACHA© and weight was not found.


Overall, rams with severe enough parasite load to require deworming had lesser weights.


Source: Translational Animal Science, October 2020

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