Poultry Industry has to deal with a varied number of challenges from rising raw material prices, to periodic fluctuations in demand for chicken and eggs to differing durations of lockdown / restrictions in key consumption states, apart from regular threat from diseases.
While navigating these challenges – an often neglected aspect is the losses due to clinical, but more importantly sub-clinical coccidiosis. Avian coccidiosis still maintains its rank as among the top 3 most economically important diseases in global poultry industry, despite decades of employing various control and management strategies.
Eimeria spp. causing Coccidiosis affects all birds (Broilers, Layers and Breeders) in virtually equal measure and result in huge economic losses through:
- Poor nutrient absorption resulting higher FCR
- Drop in egg production in Layers and Breeders
- High mortality in clinical coccidiosis
Broiler production in India is expected to increase further in the next decade, highlighting the need for effective control of coccidiosis for poultry farmers to at least minimizes losses on account of this disease.
Several attempts have been made to quantify the consequences of coccidiosis in poultry. Eimeria lifecycles have been modelled for several parasite species, assessing rates of replication and/or associated pathology. The financial cost of coccidiosis in chickens in India was estimated to exceed INR 5 Billion (INR 500 Crores).
Scientific practices such as rotation among ionophores as well as shuttle program with chemical coccidiostats have resulted in a low cost, low effort model of effective coccidiosis control.
However, decades of usage of ionophores and synthetic coccidiostats has resulted in wide-spread resistance among various Eimeria species. In one of the earliest studies out of India – Researchers at CCS HAU, Hisar (new name LUVAS, Hisar) in a research paper* published in Veterinary Parasitology have reported varying degrees of resistance among Eimeria tenella and Gurgaon isolates of Eimeria species against Maduramycin and Salinomycin.
This research paper is from 2002 and almost 2 decades of intensive poultry farming and continued usage of same ionophores would only have accentuated the resistance among Eimeria spp – causative agents of Avian Coccidiosis.
An almost identical resistance situation exists for commonly used water anti-coccidial, Amprolium. The extent of resistance among Eimeria species against Amprolium is on the increase as extensive usage and paucity of any new, therapeutic agent.
Alvizuril T25 – A New, Broad-Spectrum Molecule against Eimeria
Toltrazuril is a triazinetrione derivative and used as an anticoccidial agent. It is widely used in chickens, turkeys, pigs, and cattle for the treatment of coccidiosis and for metaphylaxis, by administration in drinking water. Key advantages of Toltrazuril are:
- Highly and equally effective against all Eimeria species
- Short duration of application (only for 2 days)
- Fully effective against all intra-cellular stages of all Eimeria species
- Water application allows flexibility with different feeding regimen
Metaphylactic and therapeutic treatment of coccidiosis with Alvizuril T25
According to American Veterinary Medical Association – Metaphylactic Usage of Anti-coccidials is warranted as:
In a flock of chicken birds – metaphylactic usage is the use of an effective anti-coccidial agent to reduce the incidence of infectious disease in a group of birds that already have some birds with evidence of infectious disease or evidence of infection and to prevent the spread of disease to entire flock.
Alvizuril T25 is the best suited as an excellent choice for Metaphylactic treatment of chicken coccidiosis because of its unique properties listed above.
Metaphylactic Usage in Broilers
Based on expected outbreak of coccidiosis and resultant economic losses in broilers – metaphylactic usage of Alvizuril T25 at Day 17 & 18 or at Day 19 & Day 20 (only 2 days therapy) results in effective control of both clinical and sub-clinical coccidiosis and helps to improve farm profitability by minimizing any mortality, improving nutrient absorption and finally improving body weights and overall production.
Metaphylactic Usage in Layers
An identical approach in commercial layers –with metaphylactic usage of Alvizuril T25 at Day 17 &18 or at Day 19 & Day 20 (only 2 days therapy) – results in highly effective control of both clinical and sub-clinical coccidiosis. Key to metaphylactic usage is to employ Alvizuril T25, at least 7 to 10 days before an expected coccidiosis outbreak, based on the farm history.
In a recent field use study in commercial layers in Haryana – strategic usage of Alvizuril T25 – at day 17 & day 18 resulted in:
- Drastic reduction in mortality
- Improvement in body weights – coming back, closer to breed standard and
- Significant clearance from body with huge reduction in Oocysts in faeces
In another field usage studies in 6 weeks old layers – on Maduramycin + Nicarbazine in feed anticoccidials – strategic usage of Alvizuril T25 for 2 days at day 47 & 48 days of age resulted in:
- Immediate control of mortality
- Drastic reductions in oocyst shedding by birds measured in OPG Count ( Oocysts Per Gram)
- Overall improvement in gut health
Alvizuril T25 has all the right characteristics to be an effective solution of poultry farmers and veterinarians already struggling with rising resistance against ionophores.
A strategic, 2-days usage of Alvizuril T25 through drinking water, in conjunction with feed anti-coccidials has potential to quickly clear the existing sub-clinical infections and improve the profitability of poultry farmers.
Dr Rakesh TiwariGroup Product Manager, Alivira Animal Health Limited