Wet weather is bittersweet for livestock with chance of BEF
WHILE Gympie region live stock producers have enjoyed summer rain, the wet weather can bring a rise in bovine ephemeral fever.
This cattle disease, commonly known as three-day sickness, causes serious economic losses through loss of condition, decreased weight gain, deaths and reduced fertility in bulls.
Cattle with BEF often lose their appetite and are reluctant to move. The clinical signs include fevers, stiffness in the muscles, recumbency and sometimes nasal discharge, drooling saliva and weeping eyes.
Producers are on the back foot due to a recent shortage of the BEF vaccination and now the summer rain.
The virus that causes BEF is thought to be transmitted between cattle by flying
insects such as mosquitoes and biting midges, and these insects become more prevalent after significant rain.
The disease can affect cattle of all ages and is often seen after a prolonged drought period because the lack of rain will have impeded the breeding of insect vectors during this time.
Producers are encouraged to complete the farm biosecurity checklist at http://www.lbn.org.au.