11 August 1995

High humidity lifts summer mastitis

SUMMER mastitis has risen by 3-4% this year, according to a Genus survey.

It cites average cost of a case at about £192 a cow. Genus vet Elizabeth Berry says summer mastitis mostly affects maiden heifers and autumn-calving beef cows – with peak incidence from July to September.

"This year, with so much humidity around, fly numbers are high and the threat from summer mastitis has increased," she says.

The link with flies means prevention is better than cure, and the advice is to keep cattle away from fields near woods or water, and to use fly control and dry cow therapy. (See Livestock June 23, p46 for more details.)