Animal Health

Best primary sector employers announced

[28 November/Rural News Group] The best primary sector employers have been celebrated at the MPI AGMARDT Primary Industries Good Employer Awards. Woodville Dairy farmers, Nicky and Ben Allomes were presented with the inaugural supreme award. The Allomes, owners and directors of Hopelands Dairies Ltd, scooped the supreme Minister’s Awards at the awards function held at...

Farmed animal antibiotic sales up but the nasties for humans down

[28 November 2018/NZ Herald] A new report from the Ministry for Primary industries on New Zealand sales of antibiotics for animals and plants that ultimately affect human health provides mixed news on progress on managing the use of these drugs. The report indicates that antibiotic sales via veterinary medicines and agricultural chemicals rose 8 per...

Shortage of vets a cause for concern for rural and urban areas

[18 November/Stuff] A national shortage of vets has New Zealand’s rural sector on high alert. Rural veterinary practices are finding it tough to fill vacant roles, impacting the availability of services to farmers and in MPI’s view putting biosecurity surveillance at risk. Miles Anderson, Federated Farmers meat and wool industry group chair, noted that a...

Bovis fears after wandering cows placed with farmer’s heifers

[1 October/The Country] Federated Farmers Northland President, John Blackwell, said a ho-hum attitude to wandering stock highlighted ignorance around biosecurity. The Northland Council found cows wandering, and placed them in a nearby paddock without telling the property owner. The farmer noticed his own heifers socialising with the lost stock. Mr Blackwell added that was unacceptable...

Hope new govt programme stops spread of mycoplasma bovis

[9 April/The Country] Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister, Damien O’Connor announced an initiative in March to track cattle movements across the Cook Strait to prevent the spread of Mycoplasma bovis. Mr O’Connor said the previous government’s failure to enforce the National Animal Identification and Tracing Scheme promoted poor farming practices and compromised the response to the...

Rabbits, rabbits everywhere- could we have found a solution?

[26 March/NZ Farmer] The rabbit haemorrhagic disease (RHD) was re-released to curb the growing wild rabbit population. It was previously released in 1997, however after 20 years its effect was decreasing. Farmers are generally relieved by the news, and some were desperate according to Mackenzie Country Runholder, Andrew Simpson. He said the timing was critical...

Application made for rabbit control disease

[7 November/ Farmers Weekly] The Ministry for Primary Industries has received an application for RHD-K5- a new Korean strain of the rabbit killing rabbit haemorrhagic disease released in 1997. MPI Audit, Assurance and Monitoring Systems Director Allan Kinsella said the MPI would consider the benefits to the agricultural sector and identification and management of risks...

Mycoplasma bovis could be linked with highly mechanised farming – MPI

[21 October/New Zealand Herald] At a public meeting to discuss the response to the recent cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis outbreak, Ministry of Primary Industries Technical Liaison Officer Victoria Barrell says there seems to be a link between highly mechanised dairy farming and the disease. The recent outbreak will result in about 4000 dairy cattle being...

Cows kept afloat for hour before rescued from water tank north of Gisborne

[26 September/ New Zealand Herald] Two cows were able to keep afloat for one hour inside a water tank before emergency officers rescued them. The cows got into their predicament after walking on top of a water tank in Ormond which collapsed under their weight. New Zealand Fire and Emergency officers had to forcefully create...

LIC will test its bulls for mycoplasma bovis as farmers prepare cows for mating

[14 September/ NZ Farmer] Livestock improvement Corporation (LIC) has announced it would test its artificial breeding bulls for the cow disease mycoplasma bovis. The announcement came after the Ministry for Primary Industries advised dairy farmers to ask suppliers if their bulls had been tested. LIC Biological Systems General Manager, Richard Spelman said the corporation had...

Mycoplasma bovis: Why the farmers aren’t being named

[1 September/ New Zealand Herald] Despite complaints, the Ministry for Primary Industries refuses to name the farmers whose livestock is infected with Mycoplasma bovis. Ministry for Primary Industries Chief Operating Officer Roger Smith said the disease is a significant issue and the law inhibits the Ministry from releasing such information. Mr Smith added the Government...

New mycoplasma bovis infections ‘entirely expected pattern’

[30 August/ NZ Herald] Six farms have been affected by mycoplasma bovis including two further Van Leeuwen Dairy Group farms and a lifestyle block near Rangiora. The Ministry for Primary Industries said more infections were expected, and the last three infected properties were an expected pattern as they had links to the existing infected properties...

MPI refuses to identify Otago farm affected by cattle disease

[25 August/The Country] Despite the announcement that the Ministry for Primary Industries believes the Mycoplasma Bovis disease is present on a third farm in Otago they have refused to identified the farm. The farm is said to have close connections to the two Van Leeuwen Dairy Group farms that have had the disease detected. A...

Confidence outbreak contained

[17 August/Otago Daily Times] Ministry for Primary Industries officials have updated farmers in South Canterbury on the Mycoplasma Bovis outbreak, which was detected on two Van Leeuwen Dairy Group farms near Waimate in July. It was the first detection of the disease in New Zealand although it is present in many other regions around the...

Nathan Guy appeals for calm after cattle disease outbreak

[26 July/ NZ Herald] Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy has appealed for calm as the Ministry for Primary Industries seeks to contain a mycoplasma bovis outbreak in South Canterbury. Mr Guy said the Glenavy farm is on lockdown and further testing is being performed. The disease is commonly found in cattle globally but has...

Milk testing for tankers to stop cattle disease spread

[1 August/ Radio NZ] Bulk milk tests will be performed on tankers nationally to assess if the cattle disease, mycoplasma bovis, outbreak has spread further than South Canterbury. The disease was found on two separate properties owned by the Van Leeuwen Dairy Group in South Canterbury, who have 16 farms in the area. Ministry for...

Federated Farmers push for infected cows to be killed

[28 July/ Stuff] Federated Farmers is supporting calls for the 150 dairy cows clinically diagnosed with the disease Mycoplasma bovis on a South Canterbury farm to be put down due to the high risk of passing the disease to other cows. Vice-president Andrew Hoggard said there is no recovery or cure to the disease. Mycoplasma...

New test to detect antibiotic resistance in dairy cows

 [16 May/ Bayer New Zealand Media Release] A new initiative from Bayer New Zealand will see enable farmers to test their bulk milk supply for antibiotic resistance with the goal of more effectively treating mastitis.  The test, Dairy Antibiogram, will allow veterinarians to determine whether antibiotic resistance to mastitis treatment is present on a farm,...

Taranaki farmer fined for surgically removing injured cow teats with scissors

 [14 July/ Business Day: NZ Farmer] Taranaki Farm Manager, Claudio Nubio Da Costa has been fined more than $3,500 for cutting off the teats of 12 cows with a pair of scissors without any pain relief. Mr Da Costa said the cows had bad lacerations to their teats and he considered it the quickest and...

New plan to tackle bovine TB

[14 July/ Rural News] Primary industry leaders have come together to launch the new plan for managing bovine TB in New Zealand. OSPRI Chairman, Jeff Grant said the country was embarking on the next stage of eradication thanks to efforts of farmers and industry and Government organisations that were shareholders and investors in the TB...

Research into rural disease transmission

 [13 May/ Radio NZ Rural] Otago University Researcher, Pippa Scott said her research would focus on the transmission of diseases between animals and humans. Ms Scott explained that around 60 percent of micro-organisms which caused human diseases entered the body in this way. Ms Scott said a big part of the research would involve collecting...

Keep a close eye on your cows’ calcium intake

 [28 April/ Bay of Plenty Times] DSM Ruminant Technical Manager, Joe McGrath said it was important for farmers to look at their cow’s skeletons when assessing their health rather than just their body condition score. Mr McGrath explained that the calcium loss in a cow’s skeleton was impossible to see and therefore made it difficult...

DairyNZ releases final report on swede deaths in Southland

[11 January/ Business Day: NZ Farmer] DairyNZ has released its final report on how swede crops caused ill-health and the deaths of more than 200 cows in Southland. The report confirmed that glucosinolates were higher in HT swede varieties. The report said that all swedes have the potential to cause liver damage in cattle, but...

Growing antibiotic resistance an opportunity for NZ

[20 November/ Rural News] According to a New Zealand Veterinary Association report, scientific innovations and reduced-antibiotic livestock systems could increase the value of New Zealand’s exports. The report said there were potential gains from addressing antibiotic resistance, and believed that doing so would be in line with three of the governments Business Growth Agenda goals....