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Sheep and Beef Cattle

Select the links below to view the session details. Sessions will be updated as information becomes available.

Tuesday 19 June

Welcome and introduction from the president of the Society of Sheep and Beef Cattle Veterinarians.

Structural soundness has known impacts on production and subsequent profitability in New Zealand beef systems. High performing sires aren’t able to deliver their genes without having a sound physical package. Can we improve structural soundness through bull selection? The B+LNZ Genetics Beef Progeny Test has the data to answer this question.

Autumn 2018 sees weaning of the final calves from the Beef+Lamb NZ cow efficiency project at Massey University. This project explored cow size and milk production in relation to efficiency, fertility, survival and carcass performance. This presentation will provide a summary of the key findings from the 10-year project.

This paper will explain the recently endorsed NZVA position statement on mating ability testing of beef bulls and the accompanying guidelines. It will also cover the history of the Sheep and Beef Cattle SIB's involvement with bull testing and the process of developing the current documents.

Fertility testing bulls, how and why. The AV method and how it works. Structural and penile issues with the bull and semen quality are reasons that bulls do not pass, will be shown in a video and picture presentation.

This presentation provides my perspective around semen testing and evaluation of breeding bulls and what we currently offer at VSHB Hastings.

Keeping accurate mating ability performance records of individual bulls from year to year confirms the consistency of performance when a bull remains physically sound. Consequently a decline in this performance will often allow early detection of a problem not picked up during ‘one off’ tests.

A case study of improving the mating, calving and weaning performance of a beef cow herd in the King Country.

The Veterinary Centre has improved data capture of beef cow herd performance to better interpret what is driving the out-comes. This presentation is some of the findings from our records, especially looking at the relationships between body condition scores recorded and aged pregnancy test out-comes.

This presentation reports on a number of projects conducted at Massey University looking at the impact of Theileria Ikeda in beef herds. Projects looked at the timing of infection and the impact of infection in suckled beef calves, shed-reared dairy-beef calves and naïve service bulls.

The many production advantages of a condensed calving pattern that will be discussed, offer an opportunity to increase productivity, efficiency and profitability in the NZ beef breeding herd. The trick is to achieve high performance levels while using cows for hill country pasture management.

Members of the Society of Sheep & Beef Cattle Veterinarians are encouraged to attend.

Wednesday 20 June

The Sheep & Beef Cattle stream will join the Veterinary Business / Industry stream from 4pm - 5.30pm.

The Nelsons participated in the B+LNZ Innovation Farm program from 2012 to 2016. Our goal was to improve gross margin per hectare by improving feed supply/demand decisions and improving feed quality through establishing a high-performance forage area. This paper discusses the process and findings from a farmer’s perspective during the four years.

Often we think of improving the ewe flock as single tasks and targets to be achieved throughout the year. This leads to focus on factors like pre-tup feeding, or late winter feeding as specific entities or farm management decisions that are tactical, to potentially fix or manage a problem at the time, rather than strategic goals which are part of an overall goal of optimising performance on the farm. This approach tends to lead to variable results from year to year, depending on circumstances, and can be viewed as the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff approach to ewe flock performance. This paper describes knowledge of the requirements to enhance lifetime performance of the ewe flock and the broader targets that need to be considered to achieve the consistency of a high performance ewe flock.

The introduction of pure sward red clover crops into Blair and Anna Nelson’s farm. Previous forage cropping experience that lead to the change, the establishment and management of red clover stands, and lessons learned. The use of forage legumes at Brownrigg Agriculture.

The introduction of pure sward red clover crops into Blair and Anna Nelson’s farm. Previous forage cropping experience that lead to the change, the establishment and management of red clover stands, and lessons learned. The use of forage legumes at Brownrigg Agriculture.

Get an early look at how B+LNZ Genetics are evolving SIL (genetic evaluation system) to directly empower industry professionals and farmers with next generation tools.

The latest development of a milking sheep industry in New Zealand has been assisted by an MBIE research programme that is investigating a range of topics such as milk composition and functionality, processing, lamb rearing, environmental footprint and ewe nutrition. This paper will describe some of the results from this programme, focusing on the features of integrated nutrition systems required to maximise the milk production of the ewe. This will encompass the requirements for both quantity and quality of feed, integration of pasture and supplements, and provide case studies of current practice to illustrate the impacts of feeding systems.

Goat kids disbudded with caustic paste or liquid nitrogen displayed greater pain sensitivity than with cautery. Cautery disbudded kids showed evidence of skull injury, whereas caustic paste and liquid nitrogen did not. Caustic paste and liquid nitrogen may cause more pain than cautery; however, cautery disbudding causes more skull injury than the alternative methods tested.

The One Health concept is unifying and inspiring. Networks, consortia, initiatives and commissions have been formed with a One Health brief, and there has been a veritable explosion of activity associated with the term. The concept of interconnectedness of the health and wellbeing of living things on the planet is intuitively understandable and has been promoted over a long period.

Understanding what good animal welfare is and how it can be assessed across a range of environments must be a key priority for ensuring the health and welfare of animals in their association with humans. Until recently animal welfare assessment traditionally relied on measures of physical health, and changes in behaviour and physiology related to negative emotional states such as pain and stress. We now recognize that good welfare is not simply the absence of disease or negative experiences, but also the possibility for, and presence of, positive emotional experiences such as pleasure and even happiness. To ensure that an animal’s welfare needs are met, we need to develop reliable methods for recognizing and assessing the range of animal emotions, as well as judge their importance from the animal’s point of view.

This paper is a worldwide first presenting the key personality characteristics of veterinarians who have proved themselves job fit by surviving more than 30 years in clinical practice. It is suggested that such evidence will better inform the process of selection for admission to veterinary school.

Members of the NZVA and VPIS are encouraged to attend.

This talk summarises a project to job-size vets in a structured and analytical process to define what positions of similar training, responsibility etc are paid.

In agriculture the quality of the soil determines what we can grow. Great soil grows great plants which in turn can grow wonderful animals. Our lives are the same. Strong mental well-being enables great thoughts to develop, Great thoughts turn into great actions. So in the same way we fertilise soil , so must we fertilise our minds.

Thursday 21 June

Recognizing the importance of BVD to the New Zealand cattle industries, government and industry recently sponsored an exciting three-year research programme to investigate the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of different national control strategies. This presentation summarizes our progress to-date and future opportunities for veterinarians to become involved in BVD research efforts.

A parallel-group controlled randomised study comparing the growth rate of BVD vaccinated calves with non-vaccinated calves following exposure to persistently infected calves. BVDv rapidly spread through the animals. Vaccinated cattle had a markedly different immune response and grew marginally faster (ADG 56.1 [95%CI -5.3 to 117.5]g/day ) than the non-vaccinated cattle.

Mycoplasm ovis is a small bacterium that infects the surface of ovine red cells causing anaemia and ill-thrift in young stock. It was first reported in New Zealand in the late 1960s but little study has been performed since this time. Consequently little is known about its prevalence in this country and its significance on production systems. During a recent drug safety trial M. ovis was detected incidentally in large group of eight month old merino lambs. Prevalence of infection in the group was very high although only a small number were considered anaemic. Parasitemia was also detected in a smaller number of lambs from a neighbouring property.

This presentation will provide a summary of the most appropriate response actions.

The results of a nationwide study conducted by VetEnt Research in 2017 will attempt to answer this question.

This is a case report detailing a high level of peritonitis and liver abscesses in prime rising two year old bulls, detected at slaughter. Histology showed chronic rumenitis present in the majority of the affected bulls.

Vineyard grazing offered a practical check on the theory of refugia by monitoring an increase in the degree of anthelmintic resistance measured in half a mob of hoggets grazing off property on this low refugia pasture and comparing with the rest of the mob remaining on the farm.

The minefield of interpreting Toxoplasmosis titres and the field effectiveness of the vaccine has been discussed in recent publications. Some updates on the complicated and evolving diagnosis and prevention of Toxoplasmosis in our flocks.

An in depth study using FECs and worm counts to investigate resistance of Trichostrongylus to a triple combination anthelmintic on a commercial sheep farm in the Te Kuiti area. This was the first of an increasing number of triple drench resistance cases we have found in our practice area.

Copper toxicity is less common than deficiency in grazing ruminants in New Zealand. But why is copper supplementation often given without first checking the copper status of animals? This talk focusses on a case of copper toxicity in pre-weaned calves. Copper toxicity is considered to occur when liver copper levels are greater than 3,000umol/kg, in this case liver copper levels far exceeded the upper normal limit and had severe effects on calf health. How did the liver copper levels get so high in young calves? Does oral molybdenum help reduce liver copper levels?

This case study examines an outbreak of severe balanoposthitis in two-tooth rams in a West Otago farm.

199 steers were drenched with an oral abamectin and levamisole combination by rumen injection. Six died. Liver abamectin and levamisole concentrations of the autopsied animals were elevated. Fibrin and evidence of inflammation in the peritoneal space suggests there was leakage of drench into the peritoneal space causing death by abamectin and levamisole toxicity.

An investigation into infertility in maiden Angus heifers when animal health and feeding issues have been ruled out.

Intensive sheep farming is more prevalent with more risk and cost that comes with it. DCAD may be an issue that we haven’t currently been considering, but could sporadically cause issues.

This presentation provides an overview of two case studies of investigation into the impact of Theileria Associated Bovine Anaemia (TABA). And the effort it take to characterise it's involvement.

The results of a trial comparing the efficacy of Phenax® Classic (Virbac, Hamilton) to Scabigard® (Zoetis, Auckland) for the vaccination of lambs against scabby mouth will be presented and discussed.

A case study of triple drench resistance development on a commercial sheep farm.

Ill-thrifty weaner calves in the King Country developed respiratory signs. Two displayed depression, harsh lung sounds and open-mouthed breathing. Post mortem revealed emphysema, oedema and grossly visible lungworms. Clinical Dictyocaulosis continues to be seen despite no recorded anthelmintic resistance. Current strategies may in fact contribute to the prevalence of disease.


Field Trip & Breakfast
Social Activities
Your Stay

The conference is organised and hosted by the New Zealand Veterinary Association.

You can contact us here.

Thank you to our Industry Partners

Bayer NZ Ltd
Boehringer Ingelheim (NZ) Ltd
Provet NZ Pty Ltd
SVS Veterinary Supplies

Animates Vetcare
Ethical Agents
Hill's Pet Nutrition
IDEXX Laboratories
Masterpet Corporation Ltd
Royal Canin
Troy Laboratories (NZ) Ltd
Tru-Test Group

Elanco Animal Health
Flexi Cards Ltd
Gribbles Veterinary Pathology
International Animal Health Products
MSD Animal Health
Norbrook Laboratories
Shoof International Ltd

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