Time to firm up approach to diseases
Published 12/04/2011 | 05:00
Spring has been kind and although the grass is slow, most flocks are outdoors at this stage. Diseases seen at housing can be quickly stopped by opening the gates and letting sheep out.
It's such a busy time that it's almost impossible to do, but now is a good time to note the problems that occurred this winter. Just make a short note and leave it until a quieter time to tackle some of those issues.
With spring in full swing, the flock must be refocused to avoid disease. The clostridial vaccine programme must be firmed up to protect lambs from unvaccinated mothers as well as lambs from a flock of well-protected dams. Better to decide now which way the farm is to go.
The safest route is to vaccinate the entire flock, including all mothers that are to stay as breeding ewes. Lambs that received no boosted colostrum from the 2010/2011 dams will need to begin their programme during the earliest weeks of life.
The others have the dam's protection and begin their own programme a month or two later.
Where pasteurella has been a problem previously, then you should use the vaccine that has the added 'P' for pasteurella to protect against that deadly form of pneumonia.
Use all vaccines carefully.