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  • Author: Sergio Aurelio Zanzani x
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Gastrointestinal nematodes of goats: host–parasite relationship differences in breeds at summer mountain pasture in northern Italy



The Orobic goat is a hardy breed native to the Orobic Alps (Lombardy, northern Italy). The aim of the study was the assessment of gastrointestinal nematode (GIN) egg excretion in Alpine and Saanen (cosmopolite breeds) and Orobic grazing goats, after a strategic treatment with eprinomectin in late June.

Material and Methods

Individual faecal samples from a mixed flock of cosmopolite and Orobic goats were collected and analysed by the FLOTAC double technique every three weeks from June to September.


Strongylida was the primary GIN infection observed in goats that grazed on Alpine pastures; a strategic treatment with eprinomectin led to a prolonged reduction of egg excretion during the whole study period. Egg excretion was also influenced by breed. Pluriparous Orobic does were able to control reinfection better than the pluriparous cosmopolite does. Regarding Nematodirus sp. eggs per gram of faeces (EPG), the autochthonous Orobic breed presented higher values than the cosmopolite breeds. However, cosmopolite goats presented higher EPG values of Strongyloides papillosus than their Orobic counterparts in August.


Further studies on genetic features of local autochthonous goats, such as the Orobic breed, are needed, since they could reveal peculiar characteristics of susceptibility, resistance or resilience to GIN infection, providing genetic resources for selection.

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