5 April 1996

Clostridium deaths

SUDDEN deaths in lambs from three to 10 weeks old may be due to clostridial disease even though ewes or lambs are fully vaccinated.

That is a finding reported in Veterinary Record, Mar 16. Chris Lewis of the Shrewsbury Veterinary Investigation Centre, Shropshire, believes the bacteria Clostridium sordellii is responsible for many of these sudden lamb deaths.

One flock suffered an 8% loss but losses are usually sporadic, he says. Most deaths seen were in lambs offered ad lib creep pellets from an early age or after a change of diet to one richer in carbohydrates.

Mr Lewis believes the deaths are occurring when lambs are being pushed too hard as occurs with the clostridial disease pulpy kidney.

He advises producers to have lamb deaths diagnosed so feeding management can be reviewed. &#42