Biosecurity visits offered to farmers within the Bovine TB Intensive Action Pilot Area (IAPA) in west Wales have been taken up by everyone offered them.

Biosecurity visits offered to farmers within the Bovine TB Intensive Action Pilot Area (IAPA) in west Wales have been taken up by everyone offered them.

Welsh CVO Christianne GlossopThe visits, offered on a voluntary basis for cattle-keepers within the IAPA, were was aimed at raising awareness of the factors which affect the standard of biosecurity on farms. Following each visit, a tailored action plan was drawn up for each IAPA cattle-keeper, providing guidance on measures to reduce the risk of bovine TB on individual farms, through protecting their herd from infection by other cattle and by wildlife.

The visits were undertaken by local vets and costs were covered by the Welsh Assembly Government as part of the TB eradication programme.

Welsh CVO Christianne Glossop welcomed the 100% uptake, saying: “Biosecurity is an important aspect of our multi-pronged approach to tackling bovine TB and it’s clear that cattle-keepers within the IAPA recognise this too, with everyone who was offered a visit taking up the offer.

“We are tackling bovine TB on all fronts, and limiting opportunities for the infection to spread between cattle and between wildlife and cattle will make an important contribution to eradicating the disease form Wales.”

Detailed analysis of the data collated from the visits is ongoing, but a preliminary check confirms that the actions chosen by most farmers were:

  • Making feed stores badger-proof;
  • Avoiding grazing where there is potential for direct contact with other cattle, or fencing 3 metres out;
  • Using slope-sided raised troughs more than 3 feet high.

It is planned that the biosecurity visits will be repeated next winter.

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