Dont buy disease
SUCKLER producers should ensure heifers are free of disease and avoid hiring or buying mature bulls to reduce the risk of infection, particularly campylobacter.
So warns George Caldow, senior veterinary investigation officer at the Scottish Agricultural Colleges St Boswells centre.
"Campylobacter, which causes infertility in suckler herds, is an increasing problem. In most cases infection is introduced by hiring someone elses bull, or infection returns with a bull hired to a friend or neighbour as a favour."
But purchased bulling heifers are thought to be the cause of a recent outbreak of campylobacter. "Most heifers have not been near a bull when they are sold. But it is possible to buy bulling heifers which have been served but have not held to the bull, and these could be carrying the infection." *