Cattle sale biosecurity reminder

Weaner sales are underway and Beef + Lamb New Zealand is reminding farmers to implement good on-farm biosecurity practices to protect their businesses from imported diseases.
Monday, 4 March 2019

Checklist

  • Ensure all cattle have NAIT eartags.
  • Retain ASD forms and receive the animals through the NAIT system.
  • Quarantine animals for seven to 14 days.
  • Record which paddocks were used for quarantining animals.

B+LNZ’s senior biosecurity advisor Will Halliday says while Mycoplasma bovis is front and foremost of most people’s minds when it comes to cattle diseases, any farm that has or is suspected of having Mp.bovis will be under a Notice of Direction.

This means animals cannot be moved from the property.

However, buyers should check all the cattle they are purchasing have NAIT tags and where possible ask the vendor directly about their NAIT records to ensure they are all up-to-date.

When purchased cattle arrive on farm, the purchaser needs to receive them through the NAIT system and fill out the forms accurately and in a timely manner. They also need to make sure they have received an ASD form with the animals and this should be retained in the farm records.

Will says all bought-in stock should be held in quarantine for seven to 14 days before they are integrated with other stock.

“That way if you notice anything wrong with them, you are not introducing communicable diseases onto the rest of the farm.”

He also recommends keeping a record of what paddocks were used for quarantine and what stock were in them before and after the quarantine period – and what stock were close by.

As well as stock being moved through weaner sales, early dried-off dairy cows are often sent off to grazing at this time of year and the same principles should apply, especially ensuring their records are up-to-date.