Journal of the Department of Agriculture, Western Australia, Series 4


Dave Muirson


Dairy cattle, Fasciola hepatica, Helminths, Anthelmintics, Western Australia

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In July 1987, a meat inspector found liver fluke (Fasciola hepatica) in a cow at an export abattoir at Waroona. This was the first evidence of the liver fluke completing its life cycle in Western Australia. Fortunately, the Department of Agriculture is reasonably confident that a comprehensive drenching programme has eradicated the liver fluke. The establishment of liver fluke in the south-west coastal areas could cause a serious problem for cattle producers and the small number of sheep producers. Stock would need additional drenching, and if it was not carried out effectively production could be lost or stock could die. Once the liver fluke was established over a wide area eradication would be almost impossible.