Date of Graduation
Bachelor of Science in Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences
Charles Rosenkrans, Jr.
One societal trend that has been gaining much traction and popularity since the 21st century began is “organic” and/or “natural” food products. In 1999, the global market accounted for $15.2 billion dollars worth of organic food and drink, compared to the market in 2014 where we consumed $80 billion dollars worth (Willer et. al, 2016). With “natural” production of food animals however, “natural” parasite transmission may be a consequence. To that end, this experiment examines the prevalence of helminths in 110 “natural” laying hens from three regional farms and the efficacies of fenbendazole, piperazine, and levamisole on what should be naive helminths. The 3 regional farms were: Vital Farms in Evansville, Arkansas; Vital Farms in Westville, Oklahoma; and Arkansas Egg Company in Summers, Arkansas. Birds from each location were administered fenbendazole, levamisole, or piperazine and one additional group served as control. After 1 week the hens were sacrificed and processed for helminth qualification and quantification. The helminths that we collected and identified from the intestinal tracts were Ascaridia galli, Heterakis gallinarum, and Raillietina cesticillus. The results show that there were far more helminths in the control group than the other treatment groups. The results also show that there were far more H. gallinarum than A. galli in the intestines of these chickens. Overall these anthelmintics used could be successful in controlling “naïve” A. galli but could not be nearly successful in controlling “naïve” H. gallinarum in these “natural” laying hens.
parasites, organic food, Arkansas farm, organic farming
Weir, Brittany R., "Studies on the Prevalence and Control of Parasitic Helminths in "Natural" Laying Hens" (2016). Animal Science Undergraduate Honors Theses. 11.