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Home WormBoss Worm Control Program for Goats – Rangelands

WormBoss Worm Control Program for Goats – Rangelands

Program summary

The WormBoss worm control program for the Rangelands region has five components that are effective when used in combination. Their effectiveness is reduced when not used in an integrated way.

A summary of the components is below; see also the links on the right under ‘Rangelands’.

1. Respond to unusual grazing conditions (caused by dry times, drought, floods, fire)

  • Move goats from areas where they have congregated as soon as possible and WormTest the mob.

2. Breed and feed for goats resistant and resilient to worms

  • Consider choosing bucks with better than average worm egg count Estimated Breeding Values (WEC EBVs) in KIDPLAN by choosing the more negative values.
  • Maintain goats above condition score 2 at all times. Reduce stocking rates if cannot supplementary feed.

3. WormTest at recommended times or situations

  • Goats that are showing signs that suggest a worm infection.
  • Prior to weaning kids (or at 4–6 months old if a set weaning does not occur).
  • Before mustering for management events.
  • 6 weeks after rain that has resulted in a green pick of annual grasses and herbage.
  • 6 weeks after goats have been congregating on small areas.
  • Each 2–3 months for goats grazing along bore drains (especially where leakages occur) or irrigation channels, with little other paddock feed.

4. Drench1 only at recommended times

  • Quarantine drench all introduced goats with an effective short-acting drench that provides (for meat goats) four drench groups including one from either of the most recently available products or (for dairy goats) fenbendazole and abamectin which are registered for use where milk is for human consumption.
  • At other times, use the Drench Decision Guide to make drenching decisions.

5. Manage drench resistance 

  • Conduct DrenchTests every 2–3 years. Use DrenchChecks between DrenchTests or if there are not enough goats in your herd to conduct a DrenchTest.
  • Avoid unnecessary drenching by restricting treatment to recommended times or in response to WormTest results.
  • Use effective drench groups3 and multi-active combinations where possible. Note: multi-active combination and other drenches are not registered for use in goats. In some states and territories they can only be used with an off-label prescription from your veterinarian.
  • In general, use short-acting treatments with long-acting products reserved for specific purposes or high worm-risk times and with an off-label prescription from your veterinarian.
  • Calibrate your drench guns, dose to the heaviest goat and follow the label or your veterinarian’s instructions.

1This drench must be tested and shown to be effective on your property
2Drench refers to anthelmintics regardless of route of administration
3Drench groups are the chemical family to which an ‘active’ belongs. An ‘active’ is the chemical in a drench responsible for killing worms. Some drenches contain more than one active and are called ‘multi-active’ or ‘combination’ drenches.

See Drench groups and actives.


When using anthelmintic products in goats, a veterinary prescription is often required because:

  • Goats require a different dose rate and withholding period than specified on most products, even for many registered goat drenches.
  • Most sheep drenches are useful, but not registered for use in goats.


While cattle drenches can be used at the label rates on goats in South Australia and sheep drenches on goats in Victoria, a veterinary prescription is still required for dose rates recommended for goats.

This is an up-to-date, integrated regional worm control program for goats in the Rangelands regions of Australia. It particularly builds upon earlier programs including joint ventures by state departments of primary industries, district veterinarians from the Livestock Health and Pest Authorities NSW, CSIRO, and universities.

The program aims to improve the profitability and welfare of your goats through:

  • fewer deaths and illness from worms
  • fewer drenches
  • improved productivity
  • prolonged life of drenches


Maxine Lyndal-Murphy (private consultant), Sandra Baxendell (Goat Veterinary Consultancies – goatvetoz), Lewis Kahn (ParaBoss), Deborah Maxwell (ParaBoss), Stephen Love (NSW DPI) with contributions from John Larsen (University of Melbourne Mackinnon Project), Greg Curran (NSW DPI), Dan Salmon (Riverina LHPA) and Noel O’Dempsey (private consultant).


This document is based on the sheep WormBoss regional program with changes supported by the Goat Industry Council of Australia and funded by Meat and Livestock Australia through the project ‘Expansion of WormBoss Website to Include Goats B.GOA.0120’.

The contributions of the parasitologists, veterinary officers, extension officers, consultants and organisations that developed the original programs from which the WormBoss programs have been drawn are acknowledged, including:

  • NSW Department of Primary Industries (and FarWestWorm)
  • Qld Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (and WormBuster)
  • Livestock Health and Pest Authorities, NSW (formerly Rural Lands/Pastures Protection Boards)
  • The Mackinnon Project (University of Melbourne School of Veterinary Science)
  • Department of Primary Industries Victoria
  • South Australian Research and Development Institute
  • CSIRO Division of Animal Health
  • Australian Wool Innovation
  • Meat and Livestock Australia


October 2016


Each regional WormBoss worm control program has been developed from local research results and experience proven to be relevant and successful for most farms in the region. ParaBoss and the University of New England acknowledge that this is not the only method of worm control in the region and more refined programs can be developed in consultation with your worm management advisor/veterinarian using information and knowledge specific to your property and goats. Future events cannot reliably be predicted accurately. ParaBoss and the University of New England make no statement, representations or warranties about the accuracy or completeness of, and you should not rely on any information relating to the WormBoss worm control program (Information). ParaBoss and the University of New England disclaims all responsibility for the Information and all liability (including without limitation liability and negligence) for all expenses, costs, losses and damages you may incur as a result of the Information being inaccurate or incomplete in any way for any reason.

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