A mathematical model of the population biology of Ostertagia ostertagi is described. The model assumes that the natural control and regulation of parasite numbers is mediated by four processes: the effect of climate on the development and survival of the free-living stages; changes in the rate of establishment of the infective larvae, and density-dependent variations in parasite survival and fecundity. The model is used to compare the course of the infection in two groups of calves. One group is assumed to have been reared under conditions typical of S.E. England and the other under conditions typical of Louisiana, USA. The more general behaviour of the model is discussed in the context of sensitivity analysis. The model is an excellent mimic of the epidemiology of bovine ostertagiasis. It can be used as a simple screening procedure to help determine which of many possible anthelmintic control strategies should be selected for more detailed examination in the field, and it provides a theoretical framework within which ideas concerning the epidemiology of parasitic gastroenteritis can be assessed and refined.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Animal Science and Zoology
- Infectious Diseases