Know How / Livestock diseases

Expert advice on identifying and treating livestock diseases such as BVD, Johne’s disease, leptospirosis in cattle, navel ill in calves, orf in sheep, watery mouth in lambs and swine fever in pigs. See the latest thinking on controlling parasitic diseases and worms such as liver fluke and lungworm.

Advice and tips

PARASITIC DISEASES

8 steps for cleaner grazing to reduce worm burden

It is well known that the problem of worms in lambs (parasitic gastroenteritis – PGE) leads to losses through reduced growth and death, and it has been estimated the annual…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

6 signs of pneumonia in calves to look out for

Pneumonia is a respiratory disease that causes inflammation of the lungs. An infection in pre-weaned calves can reduce milk production later in life by 10-15% depending on the severity. But…

SHEEP

Q&A: What is toxoplasma and how can you prevent it?

It is thought almost all sheep flocks in the UK have been exposed to the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which can cause miscarriages, stillbirths and weak lambs. Sheep vet Fiona Lovatt…

SHEEP

Advice for buying rams and observing quarantine protocols

More rams are likely to be sold direct off-farm this year due to the cancellation of some breeding sales under Covid-19 restrictions. That means asking for a “bill of health”…

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Case studies

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

How a dairy farm is controlling mycoplasma using vaccination

Mycoplasma bovis is the number one cause of pneumonia in calves in the UK as well as causing mastitis and arthritis in older animals. It is difficult to treat and…

MEDICINES

How one sheep farmer eliminated watery mouth and joint ill

Matthew Isaac has reduced cases of watery mouth and joint ill at lambing to nothing by using good bacteria to keep infections at bay.   Mr Isaac, who runs a…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

How Borders flock is using targeted selective treatments

Selective treatments as part of a responsible wormer programme have seen a Scottish Borders farm slash ewe drenching and keep old actives working. The Logans, who won Farmers Weekly's Sheep…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

How lung wash helps target treatment for pneumonia in cattle

Carrying out a lung wash to identify the cause of respiratory symptoms has enabled one beef farmer to better target antibiotics treatment, and use a specific vaccine to prevent further…

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Insights

BOVINE TB

Gatcombe bovine TB project to continue despite setback

Gatcombe Farm near Seaton in Devon, run by Robert Reed and his family, is involved in a long-term project with experienced vet Dick Sibley, seeking to tackle TB by identifying…

SHEEP

Why a spring spike in dead lambs occurs despite vaccinations

A spike in pasteurella in dead lambs, aged five to eight weeks, has been seen again this spring despite farmers vaccinating ewes for the disease. Typically found in northern England…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Study shows financial impact of crypto in beef herd

Cryptosporidiosis in young calves causes significant long-term weight loss and incurs huge economic costs, according to a study carried out in Scotland. The study, at Moredun Research Institute and The…

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News

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

ASF crisis grows as China bans German pigmeat

China has banned pork imports from Germany after a wild boar tested positive for African swine fever (ASF) inside the border with Poland last week.  Bans on German pigmeat imports…

LIVESTOCK

Germany confirms first case of African swine fever

Germany has confirmed its first-ever case of African swine fever (ASF) amid concerns that the deadly disease in pigs is spreading to the West. Agriculture minister Julia Klöckner announced in…

SHEEP

Parasite naivety could be to blame for late lamb losses

Farmers experiencing a spike in lamb mortality after a dry spring and wet summer could be the victims of a delayed surge in parasites. Reports of farms in mid-Wales and…

LIVESTOCK

Apha warning as African swine fever situation deteriorates

African swine fever is continuing to spread through Europe, with large-scale pig herds succumbing to the disease close to the German border. According to the latest monthly figures published by…

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Opinion

BOVINE TB

FW Opinion: Wider review of slurry role in bovine TB needed

Queen guitarist and animal rights campaigner Brian May has shared with Farmers Weekly in some detail how, working with vet Dick Sibley, he has helped a Devon dairy farm regain…

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Test and reviews

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Buyer's guide to ketone testers for dairy farmers

Simple and quick tests that measure ketone levels in dairy cows are allowing farmers to act promptly with interventions to protect milk yields and herd performance. Subclinical ketosis can’t be…

DAIRY

Buyer's guide: Teat disinfection technology

As herd sizes increase and labour sourcing continues to create challenges, more farmers are turning to automated teat disinfection technologies to ease pressure in the parlour and promote efficiencies. Although…

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Video

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Video: How to use orf vaccine correctly on sheep

About one in five lambs – 900,000 – are affected by the highly contagious orf virus in England’s sheep flock each year according to MSD Animal Health. Added to that…

BOVINE TB

Video: Brian May's Gatcombe Farm project gets TB-free status

A new approach to disease control on a dairy farm in Devon – taking out infective cows and minimising exposure to slurry – has seen the herd attain TB-free status…

MEDICINES

Antimicrobial resistance: How it works and why it's important

Antimicrobial resistance, and specifically antibiotics resistance, are high on the agenda for animal agriculture and veterinary medicine. Government and industry targets have been set for antibiotics reduction and antibiotics use is…

PARASITIC DISEASES

Video: How farmers are uniting to eradicate sheep scab

Sheep scab is a huge problem and if left untreated can affect a sheep's health and severely impact a sheep business. One mite is enough to spread the disease and…

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