Maybe not!  What you are seeing are tapeworm segments and yes they can look pretty bad!

A common misconception when looking at a sample of sheep dung producers make, is they base their decision on the worm status of the mob based on the presence of white “segments”. These white segments are small portions of tapeworm and whilst very visible they are only an indication of the presence of one type of worm. Yes they look bad but it is no indicator of the real worm burden. There are many other worms, mainly roundworms, which are much smaller and their eggs can only be seen under a microscope, these worms have a much greater impact on the well-being of your livestock. In sheep Goats and Alpaca theses are the only parasites you’ll see in a sample the real nasties are only visible under the scope.

Tapeworm can cause compaction issues when in huge numbers and we see one or two cases of this every year. Apart from that they are not much to worry about. We report the tapeworm level when performing each test, so you only need to be concerned if we report a high level.