22 May 2015 | Online since 2003



Producers urged to vaccinate lambs


The warm and sunny March weather was a godsend for the many UK sheep units lambing during the month, but producers must not become complacent if they are to gain full value from the new season lamb crop.

"The weather has been great for the early spring lambers and generally it’s gone pretty well so far despite widespread worries about the impact of the Schmallenberg virus," says independent sheep consultant Lesley Stubbings.

"Early signs are that although we may not have had a bumper lamb crop, it’s a lot better than it could have been considering the disease concerns and the drought conditions prevailing around tupping time. With prices still firm, the aim now has to be to keep new season lambs healthy because they are so valuable. Losing lambs to easily preventable diseases such as pasteurellosis this summer is throwing money away.


"We also had a return to wintry conditions in many parts in early April and we could still have some wet and stormy weather, and sometimes this is all the stress it takes to cause a disease outbreak in unvaccinated lambs."

She points out that pneumonia continues to be a significant cause of death in unvaccinated lambs.

"The disease can have a variety of causes, but many outbreaks are caused by pasteurellosis. Pasteurella are a group of bacteria, with Mannheimia haemolytica and Bibersteinia trehalosi being the most important types to cause disease in sheep. Flock problems usually start with sudden deaths, often in relatively young lambs. But occurrence can be sporadic in individual sheep.

"If ewes are vaccinated properly in the run up to lambing then the lambs will also gain immunity from their colostrum, but this so called passive immunity only lasts for so long," she warns.

Lesley Stubbings reminds producers that the colostrum lambs receive from the ewe shortly after birth only gives them protection against pasteurella for 3-4 weeks, compared to up to 12 weeks for the clostridial diseases like pulpy kidney, braxy, blackleg and tetanus.

"This means that some early season lambs may already be unprotected and at real risk from these prevalent disease threats unless they are vaccinated themselves. Don’t undo all the good work," she urges.

Download




Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


15 May 2015
ASSISTANT
We are looking for a hard working experienced egg farm Assistant to supervise and smoothly run our poultry farm with support ...

18 May 2015
Agriculture Solicitor
One of the leading Agriculture teams, listed on the Legal 500 and recommended by Chambers & Partners, are looking to brin...

16 May 2015
Administrative Assistant - Agriculture
This role is based working for a popular law firm in central Cambridge. The position is to provide general administrative ass...

13 May 2015
Lecturer in Farm Animal Health and Produ...
Lecturer in Farm Health and Production (Assistant Lecturer on RVC Scale). We are looking for an enthusiastic and self-motivat...

21 May 2015
Growing Together Scotland Advisor
FCFCG Scotland is currently recruiting for two part-time posts, both based at our office at Gorgie City Farm, Edinburgh....



Top stories you may have missed
15 May 2015 | Arable

Scotland’s Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead is calling on the Europ...


15 May 2015 | Finance

As the country settles down following the turmoil of the general election, ...


14 May 2015 | Animal Health

New research from the Universities of Bristol and Cambridge has found that ...


13 May 2015 | Animal Health

A new publication to help farmers prevent sheep lameness and offer advice o...


12 May 2015 | Agri Safety

The Farmers’ Union of Wales is putting the spotlight on Liver fluke at next...


5 May 2015 | News

The UK is now third in the global rankings for utility-scale solar energy a...


29 April 2015 | Agri Safety

A recent Rural Watch demonstration and information event gave Farmers’ Unio...


24 April 2015 | Meat Processing

Retailers should confirm their commitments to sourcing UK lamb this season,...


15 April 2015 | Meat Processing

A leading retailer has apologised after selling imported lamb in a Borders ...


9 April 2015 | Finance

The time has come for landlords to expect to see reductions in farm rents, ...