Grass Seed Infestation (GSI) in sheep

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DaveSec's picture
Last seen: 2 weeks 4 days ago
Joined: 22/09/2018 - 4:40pm
Grass Seed Infestation (GSI) in sheep

I am researching the problem of Grass Seed Infestation (GSI) in sheep.
Was wondering how farmers usually get the initial hint that some of their sheep have GSI. Is it because sheep start rubbing, scratching, or biting their bodies more extensively? If so, is there some rubbing/scratching/biting form or patterns that implies a GSI issue and not, say, a lice problem?

admin's picture
Last seen: 1 day 6 hours ago
Joined: 28/02/2011 - 2:19pm

Hi Dave,

From my experience there will be no difference between the biting and scratching symtpoms shown between grass seed or lice. Obviously a give away of grass seed will be the paddock itself and the condition of the barley grass. Other then that the only way to tell would be to open up the wool and carry out an inspection.


DaveSec's picture
Last seen: 2 weeks 4 days ago
Joined: 22/09/2018 - 4:40pm

Hi Charlie,

Thanks for sharing your knowledge!
I have a few more questions which you could hopefully answer:
What is the difference in prevalence between grass seed and lice infestations in Australia?
Is barley grass the common culprit, or are there other grass species that commonly cause GSI?
When you say "the condition of the barley grass", at what stage does the barley grass start being a hazard? When the "heads" become brown and dry or earlier than that?


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