FAMACHA is a diagnostic tool to help farmers identify parasite infection in small ruminants, such as sheep and goats. The tool is a chart that matches eyelid color to anemia levels, an indicator of parasite infection. This type of diagnosis allows farmers to target treatment only to infected animals, which in some systems has reduced use of deworming agents by 90 percent. Not only do farmers save money, they significantly reduce the likelihood of causing parasites to become resistant to dewormers. Identification of susceptible and more resistant animals enables producers to make more informed breeding and culling decision in managing their flocks and herds.
Iowa County UW Extension, in cooperation with UW-Madison Animal Science Department and Arena area sheep producers Vince and Nancy Pope, will host a producer workshop to teach sheep and goat producers about using this tool to assist with parasite control strategies on their own farms. For more information, check out the FAMACHA workshop brochure (pdf file). The meeting will be held in Arena, WI on June 27, 2015 beginning at 10:45 am. Registrations are limited, so RSVP early to ensure a seat. For more information and to register, please contact Gene Schriefer, Iowa County Extension Agriculture Agent at (608) 930-9850, or email Gene at firstname.lastname@example.org.