Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

The use of chicory for parasite control in organic ewes and their lambs

  • S. ATHANASIADOU (a1), D. GRAY (a2), D. YOUNIE (a2), O. TZAMALOUKAS (a1), F. JACKSON (a3) and I. KYRIAZAKIS (a1)...

The aim of the present study was to investigate the potential benefits of grazing lactating ewes and their lambs on chicory (Cichorium intybus). Fifty-six certified organic twin-rearing ewes were either drenched with an anthelmintic or not, within 2 days after parturition and were grazed upon either grass/clover or chicory pastures. Around 12 weeks after parturition a subset of 12 lambs per treatment was slaughtered for worm number and parasite species determination. The faecal egg counts of lambs from undrenched ewes grazing on chicory were significantly lower than those of lambs from undrenched ewes grazing on grass. Lambs grazing on chicory had similar abomasal worm counts as those grazing on grass at 12 weeks of age; the predominant species was Teladorsagia circumcincta. There was no difference between the intestinal worm counts in lambs grazing on grass or chicory, with Trichostrongylus vitrinus being the predominant species. Liveweight gains over the 126-day experimental period were significantly higher in lambs from drenched than those from undrenched ewes. Lambs from undrenched ewes grazing on chicory had higher liveweight gains compared to those from undrenched ewes grazing on grass. Although chicory grazing did not affect ewe nematode egg excretion, it resulted in lower egg counts in lambs and improved their liveweight gains to the same level as those deriving from drenched ewes.

Corresponding author
Scottish Agricultural College, Sir Stephen Watson Building, Bush Estate, Penicuik, Midlothian EH26 0PH, UK. Tel: +44 131 535 3211. Fax: +44 131 535 3121. E-mail:
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Athanasiadou, S., Tzamaloukas, O., Kyriazakis, I., Jackson, F. and Coop, R. L. ( 2005). Testing for direct anthelmintic effects of bioactive forages against Trichostrongylus colubriformis in grazing sheep. Veterinary Parasitology127, 233243.

Barger, I. A. ( 1993). Influence of sex and reproductive status on susceptibility of ruminants to nematode parasitism. International Journal for Parasitology23, 463469.

Barry, T. N. ( 1998). The feeding value of chicory (Cichorium intybus) for ruminant livestock. Journal of Agricultural Science131, 251257.

Coop, R. L. and Kyriazakis, I. ( 1999). Nutrition-parasite interaction. Veterinary Parasitology84, 187204.

Hoskin, S. O., Barry, T. N., Wilson, P. R., Charleston, W. A. G. and Hodgson, J. ( 1999). Effects of reducing anthelmintic input upon growth and faecal egg and larval counts in young farmed deer grazing chicory (Chicorium intybus) and perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne)/white clover (Trifolium repens) pasture. Journal of Agricultural Science132, 335345.

Houdijk, J. G. M., Kyriazakis, I., Jackson, F., Huntley, J. F. and Coop, R. L. ( 2003). Is the allocation of metabolisable protein prioritised to milk production rather than to immune functions in Teladorsagia circumcincta infected lactating ewes? International Journal for Parasitology33, 327338.

Landau, S., Molle, G., Fois, N., Friedman, S., Barkai, D., Decandia, M., Cabiddu, A., Dvash, L. and Sitzia, M. ( 2005). Safflower (Carthamus tinctorius L.) as a novel pasture species for dairy sheep in the Mediterranean conditions of Sardinia and Israel. Small Ruminant Research59, 239249.

Marley, C. L., Cook, R., Keatinge, R., Barrett, J. and Lampkin, N. H. ( 2003). The effect of birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) and chicory (Cichorium intybus) on parasite intensities and performance of lambs naturally infected with helminth parasites. Veterinary Parasitology112, 147155.

Marley, C. L., Fraser, M. D., Roberts, J. E., Fychan, R. and Jones, R. ( 2006a). Effects of legume forages on ovine gastrointestinal parasite development, migration and survival. Veterinary Parasitology138, 308317.

Marley, C. L., Cook, R., Barrett, J., Keatinge, R. and Lampkin, N. H. ( 2006b). The effects of birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) and chicory (Cichorium intybus) when compared with perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) on ovine gastrointestinal parasite development, survival and migration. Veterinary Parasitology138, 280290.

Molan, A. L., Duncan, A. J., Barry, T. N. and McNabb, W. C. ( 2003). Effects of condensed tannins and crude sesquiterpene lactones extracted from chicory on the motility of larvae of deer lungworm and gastrointestinal nematodes. Parasitology International52, 209218.

Molle, G., Decandia, M., Fois, N., Ligios, S., Cabiddu, A. and Sitzia, M. ( 2003). The performance of Mediterranean dairy sheep given access to sulla (Hedysarum coronarium L.) and annual ryegrass (Lolium rigidum Gaudin) pastures in different time proportions. Small Ruminant Research49, 319328.

Niezen, J. H., Waghorn, G. C. and Charleston, W. A. G. ( 1998a). Establishment and fecundity of Ostertagia circumcincta and Trichostrongylus colubriformis in lambs fed lotus (Lotus pedunculatus) or perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne). Veterinary Parasitology78, 1321.

Niezen, J. H., Robertson, H. A., Waghorn, G. C. and Charleston, W. A. G. ( 1998b). Production, faecal egg counts and worm burdens of ewe lambs which grazed six contrasting forages. Veterinary Parasitology80, 1527.

Paolini, V., De La Farge, F., Prevot, F., DorchiesP. and HosteH. ( 2005). Effects of the repeated distribution of sainfoin hay on the resistance and the resilience of goats naturally infected with gastrointestinal nematodes. Veterinary Parasitology127, 277283.

Porter, L. J., Hrstich, L. N. and Chan, B. G. ( 1986). The conversion of procyanidins and prodelphinidins to cyanidin and delphinidin. Phytochemistry25, 223230.

Price, M. L. and Butler, L. G. ( 1977). Rapid visual estimation and spectrophotometric determination of tannin content of sorghum grain. Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry25, 12681273.

Rees, S. B. and Harborne, J. B. ( 1985). The role of sesquiterpene lactones and phenolics in the chemical defense of the chicory plant. Phytochemistry24, 22252231.

Scales, G. H., Knight, T. L. and Saville, D. J. ( 1995). Effect of herbage species and feeding level on internal parasites and production performance of grazing lambs. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research38, 237247.

Shaik, S. A., Terrill, T. H., Miller, J. E., Kouakou, B., Kannan, G., Kaplan, R. M., Burke, J. M. and Mosjidis, J. A. ( 2006). Sericea lespedeza hay as a natural deworming agent against gastrointestinal nematode infection in goats. Veterinary Parasitology139, 150157.

Tzamaloukas, O., Athanasiadou, S., Kyriazakis, I., Jackson, F. and Coop, R. L. ( 2005). Effects of short-term grazing on bioactive forages on lambs artificially infected with Teladorsagia circumcincta. International Journal for Parasitology35, 329335.

Tzamaloukas, O., Athanasiadou, S., Kyriazakis, I., Huntley, J. F. and Jackson, F. ( 2006). The effect of chicory (Cichorium intybus ) and sulla (Hedysarum coronarium) on larval development and mucosal cell responses of growing lambs challenged with Teladorsagia circumcincta. Parasitology132, 419426.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

  • ISSN: 0031-1820
  • EISSN: 1469-8161
  • URL: /core/journals/parasitology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 21 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 188 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 25th June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.