Field Day solutions: Nose to nose contact spreads cattle disease

ABOVE: Norco field officer Bruce Lyle at the field day at the Primex grounds in Casino.

Susanna Freymark

It’s been a few years since the last Norco Field Day.

Norco field officer Bruce Lyle said the last field day was when the region was in drought.

Field day sessions are on all day today, Thursday, September 29 at the livestock shed at the Primex grounds in Casino.

“Today is about giving people information,” Mr Lyle said.

“It’s a solutions day.”

One of the first speakers was Dr Lee Taylor from Toowoomba talking about pestivirus.

Dealing with pestivirus is important because of the economic cost to the producer and the industry, Dr Taylor said.

“You can’t ignore diseases like pestivirus. It’s highly contagious and is spread by nose to nose contact,” he told the 100 farmers gathered in the shed.

Pestivirus mainly affects reproduction in cattle – causing abortions and impacting growth rates. 

It also affects the immune system of cows and calves.

This year’s flooding and the damage to fences meant herds mingled and spread the disease.

“It has been a perfect storm for this disease,” Dr Taylor said.

Vaccination before mating is key to controlling the disease.

“If a calf is born with pestivirus it will have lower growth rates and be more likely to die,” he said.

The day included other speakers, a drone demo and a steak lunch.

After what has been a tough year for producers, the day was an opportunity to learn more and to connect with other farmers.

At the Norco Field Day. Photos: Susanna Freymark
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