Mycoplasma bovis
Jersey cows


Mycoplasma bovis

The New Zealand Veterinary Association (NZVA) is supporting veterinarians to help farmers respond to the detection of Mycoplasma bovis in Canterbury, Southland and Hawkes Bay.

Find resources for veterinarians and links to updates on the response below.

What is Mycoplasma bovis?

Mycoplasma bovis is a bacterium that causes illness in cattle, including udder infection (mastitis), abortion, pneumonia, and arthritis.

In July 2017, the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) detected the bacterial infection Mycoplasma bovis in cattle at a South Canterbury dairy farm. This was the first time it has been found in New Zealand.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has assured the public that the infection cannot be passed on to humans and that it presents no food safety risk. MPI have stated that there is no concern about consuming milk and milk products from affected cattle.

Farmers should call their veterinarian if they suspect their cattle are showing any of the clinical signs of the disease. These can include:

  • Mastitis in dry and milking cows.
  • Arthritis in cows.
  • Late term abortions.
  • Premature calves.


Recently added

Video update from NZVA President

In this short video, NZVA President Peter Blaikie explains the NZVA's role in the eradication decision, what NZVA is doing to support members and farmers, and the role of our new M. bovis Steering Group.


June 2018

May 2018

April 2018

  • Commercial Mycoplasma bovis test being developed - MPI media release
    A commercial diagnostic tool, which will allow farmers to test for cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis themselves, is being developed by a partnership comprising commercial laboratories, industry representatives and the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI).
  • MPI committed to efficient Mycoplasma bovis compensation payouts - MPI media release
    The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is committed to helping farmers affected by the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis receive their due compensation and is working hard to process all current claims.
  • Biosecurity checklist
    This resource can be used by farmers to help protect their farm. We encourage veterinarians to work through this checklist with their farmer clients.

March 2018

Recently added info for veterinarians

Ministry for Primary Industries response updates

If you have any concerns about your animals, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible for advice or call MPI on 0800 80 99 66.


Dairy and beef industry advice and guidance specific to Mycoplasma bovis
Information for farmers prepared by the NZVA Society of Dairy Cattle Veterinarians, Beef + Lamb New Zealand and DairyNZ.

You can subscribe to updates on the MPI website.