Friday, 03 July 2020 11:58

Monthly dog dosing will close measles gap

Written by  Staff Reporters
Ovis management’s Dan Lynch says it is a big mistake for sheep farmers to reduce on-farm dog treatments Ovis management’s Dan Lynch says it is a big mistake for sheep farmers to reduce on-farm dog treatments

Requiring that all dogs on sheep farms be treated every four weeks for sheep measles is a significant step in reducing the impact of the parasite, says Dan Lynch.

Lynch, project manager, Ovis Management Ltd, says the change – as part of the New Zealand Farm Assurance Programme – means a gap in national sheep measles control is being closed even further. 

He says one of the challenges with reducing sheep measles levels is that surveys show farmers buying in store lambs to finish have a higher prevalence than those finishing their own lambs.

“This is occurring despite the fact that the surveys show both groups are getting the same level of control,” Lynch adds. 

“This leads to a situation where the store lamb finisher is contacted about their high prevalence at processing. However, the problem is with the breeder, who is out of the feedback loop.”

He says this is further complicated by the fact that, in nearly all cases, store lines are mixed – so the identity of the originating farm is lost.

“However, most farmers will at some point finish lambs and will likely be part of the NZ Farm Assurance Programme,” Lynch adds. “This means they will be treating their dogs four weekly and reduce the chances that they will unknowingly sell infected lambs to finishers.”

Dan Lynch.

Meanwhile, Lynch adds that the national prevalence of sheep measles for the current processing season, to the end of May, is in line with the record low of last year.

“Although, in recent months, the North Island lamb prevalence is tracking slightly ahead of last year.”

Lynch says that one factor noted during farm visits is farmers who have had few sheep measles in recent seasons have been reducing on-farm dog treatments. 

“Big mistake!” says Lynch. “If you achieve zero or minimal infection levels, protect that achievement by keeping a tight treatment dog access programme in place.”

Key steps for control

• Dose all dogs on-farm, monthly

• Treat all sheep or goat meat by freezing or cooking

• Deter or ban all external dogs from entering farm unless, they have a current treatment certificate.

More like this

Limited feed puts ewes at risk

Severe feed shortages in parts of the country mean many ewes are on a nutritional knife-edge heading into lambing and could be at risk of developing metabolic disorders.

Feed the most critical factor

Maintaining ewes in good body condition and the provision of shelter are two important management factors in maximising this year’s lamb crop.

What’s different? — Editorial

OPINION: Long-time wool industry observers have greeted the latest report aimed at resurrecting the ailing fortunes of the country’s struggling strong wool sector with a healthy dose of cynicism.

An actual plan or more woolly thinking?

Despite claims by Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor that a new report will be the plan “to revitalise New Zealand’s strong wool sector…” there’s widespread belief it will do no such thing.

Featured

 

Limited feed puts ewes at risk

Severe feed shortages in parts of the country mean many ewes are on a nutritional knife-edge heading into lambing and could be at risk of developing metabolic disorders.

Jack’s unique solution

Jason Jack was left with severe spinal injuries after a wakeboarding accident when he was 29, but that hasn’t stopped him getting out and about in difficult environments.

National

A ticking time bomb

Our dairy industry risks being exposed to a ‘ticking time bomb’ of unethical players unlawfully passing off New Zealand-made and…

Nervous wait for winter

The unknown of what winter will bring is very much on the mind of the Hawkes Bay Rural Support Trust…

Be careful, Potatoes NZ!

Moves by the NZ potato industry to have anti-dumping tariffs imposed on European imports could play into the hands of…

China keeps dairy prices high

Whole milk powder (WMP) prices are now sitting above pre-Covid-19 levels and New Zealand farmers can thank a resurging Chinese…

Machinery & Products

Hydrogen excavator a first

While most motive industries are focused on hybrid or EV power plants, JCB has developed the construction industry’s first hydrogen-powered…

Jack’s unique solution

Jason Jack was left with severe spinal injuries after a wakeboarding accident when he was 29, but that hasn’t stopped…

HP and digital tech combo

The latest New Holland T8 GENESIS is said to capitalise on the productive combinations of Stage V horsepower and digital…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Spell check

Your old mutt was not surprised to see the NZ Dairy Industry Awards hastily remove the title of this year’s…

About time!

Your canine crusader has been a long-time critic of NZ governments – of all stripes – who, for the past…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter