It’s official – subclinical Johne’s disease in the herd is costing farmers money

Keeping the ‘R’ in DRL – DRL’s latest published study confirms that subclinical Johne’s disease in the herd is costing farmers money. Conducted in collaboration with Dr Andrew Bates at the Vetlife New Zealand Centre for Dairy Excellence our latest study charts the economic impact of sub-clinical infection with Mycobacterium paratuberculosis (MAP) on milk production in a New Zealand dairy herd. Using DRL’s testing methods to confirm the fecal shedding characteristics of ELISA positive cows, this study confirms that even sub-clinical Johne’s disease has a significant impact on milk production. Compared to cows where MAP was not detected, daily milk solids production was 4% less for high ELISA positive cows, 6% less for moderate shedders and 12% less for high shedders. DRL’s testing strategy was able to stratify the animals in this herd based on their likely impact on production and disease spread; this allows farmers to prioritise removal of heavily shedding, less-productive animals and so reduce the risk of further infection of young stock. Read the full article here.

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