Here is the answer to our latest Mystery Malady. Click here to view the original question and photo. This photo, from Dr. Dee Griffin at West Texas A&M University, shows a liver parasitized by liver flukes.
According to a fact sheet from the University of Florida, the common liver fluke (Fasciola hepatica) is one of the most damaging parasites in Florida cattle, and infects cattle across the Gulf Coast states and the Pacific Northwest. The adult liver fluke resides in the bile ducts of the animal's liver. The adult liver flukes produce eggs which are carried with bile to the gut and are then passed in the feces.
While liver flukes are most common in high-rainfall areas, they can cause problems in dryer parts of the country, even the semi-arid West, particularly on irrigated pastures.
We are looking for more pictures to use on our website. If you have a photo of an interesting condition, lesion or injury, please send it to me at [email protected].