Re­minder to vac­ci­nate herd for BEF

Central and North Burnett Times - - RURAL UPDATE -

CAT­TLE pro­duc­ers are re­minded to pro­tect their herds from bovine ephemeral fever.

Also known as three­day sick­ness, the disease is trans­mit­ted by in­sect bites, in­clud­ing those from mos­qui­toes.

Sum­mer heat cre­ates prime con­di­tions for the in­sects.

Gayn­dah vet­eri­nar­ian DrNathan Hitch­cock said vac­ci­nat­ing cat­tle could save thou­sands of dol­lars in the long term.

“You only have to lose one an­i­mal­worth $1000 to pay for $1000 of vac­cine,” Dr Hitch­cock said.

The disease is a par­tic­u­lar con­cern in valu­able cat­tle and could cost the in­dus­try mil­lions of dol­lars a year.

Dr Hitch­cock said North Bur­nett cat­tle own­ers of­ten vac­ci­nated bulls be­fore they went on sale.

In­fected an­i­mals lose weight while sick, which can im­pact prof­itabil­ity of cat­tle en­ter­prises.

“You’re los­ing about a month,” Dr Hitch­cock said.

Pfizer Ve­teri­nary Medicine Re­search and deve- lop­ment se­nior prin­ci­pal sci­en­tist Dr Ge­or­gia Deliyan­nis said vac­ci­na­tion was the only method of prevent­ing the disease.

“The re­search in­di­cates there has been no sig­nif­i­cant change to the virus in Aus­tralia in over 30 years and the cur­rent vac­cine was shown to be ef­fec­tive across a range of viruses col­lected in the field,” she said.

She said pro­duc­ers should speak to their vet­eri­nar­ian for an ap­pro­pri­ate vac­ci­na­tion plan. ■ If you have ex­pe­ri­enced BEF losses, email bran­don.livesay@cnbtimes.com.au.

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