Adapting to the loosening of COVID-19 lock down and preparing for the return to the new “normal”.

As we reported in our ‘News’ in April 2020, Ridgeway has been open for business throughout lock down. The Parasitology Laboratory has been very busy sourcing new parasites whilst maintaining both of its Liver and Rumen Fluke snail colonies.

What’s been happening at RRL?

As the UK and countries in Europe are gradually loosening the movement restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic, the laboratory is experiencing an increase in the number of enquiries and requests for liver fluke metarcercariae. At present we have a good stock of 42,700 Triclabendazole susceptible metacercariae and 67,500 Triclabendazole resistant metacercariae available for sale. These will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

In order to avoid disappointment the Laboratory is requesting that if possible customers make their requests for metacercariae at the earliest opportunity so that we can increase production if necessary.

Image 1: Head of a mud snail (with eyes visible), which is the intermediate host for liver and rumen fluke.

As previously mentioned Ridgeway has recently isolated the lung worm Dictyocaulus filaria, we plan to passage this strain later on in the year and add it to our catalogue of parasites available for sale.

Are your livestock infected with liver fluke?

Although last winter showed a relatively low number of reported cases of liver fluke infections (Source: SCOPS), farmers and small holders have been urged to not become complacent in regard to the risk of liver fluke infections developing later on in the year. 

To minimise this risk why not get your livestock (cattle, sheep or goats) tested for liver and rumen fluke at Ridgeway, as this will indicate if fluke are a problem on your land. If the result is negative , you will save money and reduce the risk of developing resistant strains due to unnecessary worming.

See our Services page which details the tests we offer and explains how to send off your samples. Results are emailed to you within two working days of receipt of the sample at the Laboratory (excluding pasture larval test).

Image 2: Liver fluke metacercariae produced by the mud snail, which is ingested from Pasture by livestock.