This Anipedia-hosted chapter is an extract from a comprehensive textbook compiled by expert parasitologists at the Faculty of Veterinary Science of the University of Pretoria. The chapter was written by Prof Joop Boomker, who has 40 years’ experience on veterinary helminthology in South Africa. Ruminant helminths impact the categories of livestock which are the main staple of farming, both for commercial and small-scale farmers. Helminths are responsible for massive losses in both these farming sectors, as a result of mortalities and production losses. A knowledge of these helminths allows informed prevention and control.

Prof Boomker was assisted in the writing of the chapter by experts from Afrivet Business Management, who are experts on the judicious use of anthelmintics. They have also initiated and stewarded the use of the Hemonchus contortus vaccine against this worm in sheep, a major advance to promoting control and preventing anthelminthic resistance.

Who Should Enrol

Veterinary, para-veterinary and allied animal and human health professionals and students.

Course Design

Online CPD activity

Course Content

Module 1. Helminths of Ruminants (1 CPD point)

Learning Outcomes

Given the large amount of information which the student is required to digest on ruminant helminths, it is important that they achieve an overall perspective of the most important aspects before tackling subjects such as control. By varying the answers provided to include aspects of the issues below students are forced to focus on this without really being aware of the process.

The questions aim to do this by testing knowledge on:

  • Pathogenicity and impact of parasite which reflects the importance of the parasite
  • Location of parasites in the body system
  • Importance of worm species in various ruminants
  • Lifecycle stages of helminths
  • Some aspects of transmission, classification and zoonoses.

Course Highlights

The online information for the CPD course on this species account provides an overview of the subject about the most important helminths of ruminants and those likely to cause confusion. The chapter is set out on a systems basis given that veterinarians are most commonly confronted with helminth problems at post-mortem when a diagnosis of mortality or morbidity is required. The content allows the student to familiarise themselves with parasites most likely to be found in each system. However, all aspects of each species are discussed thoroughly including an overview of importance, distribution, most common hosts, lifecycle and transmission, treatment and control.

Many of the sections include full colour photos of the helminths in situ or the pathology caused by the parasites. Practical and comprehensive advice, which is demanded from consulting veterinarians, is given on control of each group of helminths, with discussion on methods for reducing the use of anthelmintics in those groups where anthelmintic resistance is most commonly seen.

The learner will be able to study and complete the course materials and online tests at his/her own pace.


This course has a multiple-choice test.


Module 1. Helminths of Ruminants
South African Veterinary Council (SAVC)
1 CPD Point


In order to qualify for CPD points, the learner will be required to complete the course and pass the multiple-choice test for each module with 80%.

1.0 CPD Points