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Welsh farming groups call for scab eradication programme

Farming groups in Wales are calling for joined-up thinking when it comes to getting on top of sheep scab.


Laura   Bowyer

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Laura   Bowyer
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Farming groups have called for rural development programme (RDP) funds to kick start and facilitate and a Welsh sheep scab eradication programme.


Following a review of the report written by Professor Richard Wall from the School of Veterinary Science at Bristol University, the Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW), NFU Cymru, National Sheep and WLBP have written to Peredur Hughes, chairman of the framework group, jointly calling for the use of RDP monies to kick start and facilitate a Welsh sheep scab eradication programme.


The four parties confirmed their willingness to work collaboratively with all organisations to try and eradicate this disease.


It would include provisions to raise awareness of the current problems, monies for scab diagnosis, flock herd health plans, veterinary advice (especially on correct preventative and treatment procedures) and the establishment of local groups to combat recurrent scab outbreaks.


The report also highlights geographical variation in scab incidences and also considers a more targeted and regional approach to scab management.


Problems such as incorrect dosing and misdiagnosis continue to contribute towards scab outbreaks according to a report based on a survey of members of Welsh Lamb and Beef Producers Ltd (WLBP), commissioned by the Welsh Government’s Animal Health and Welfare Framework Group.


Sheep scab is a highly insidious disease which has significant welfare implications for infected sheep. Given the high economic and welfare implications, it is therefore essential that the industry is provided with enough support and resources to eradicate this disease.


Read More

Scab: The sheep industry’s ongoing irritation Scab: The sheep industry’s ongoing irritation

Scab facts

Scab facts

Scab facts

  • Scab is caused by infestation with the mite Psoroptes ovis and continues to persist in the UK following its re-introduction in the 1970s.
  • The cost of sheep scab, in terms of losses and treatment, has been estimated to cost the Welsh sheep sector up to £8 million per annum.
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