Veterinarians are being urged to consider appropriate control strategies to deal with increasing pressure on dairy production systems.

The advice comes as the increased pressure on production systems has led to a rise in awareness of mycotoxin challenges in herds.

Derek McIlmoyle, AB Vista’s Great Britain and Ireland technical director, will highlight the dangers of sub-clinical ketosis and mycotoxins at the upcoming London Vet Show, and discuss how they can be controlled.

“Our herds are increasingly under metabolic and production stress, so are more susceptible to the negative effects of mycotoxins,” Dr McIlmoyle said.

Ten to 20 years ago, there was a lot less pressure on production systems, meaning cows could more easily deal with mycotoxins.

“We need veterinarians to put control strategies in place to assist in reducing mycotoxin levels, to reduce clinical and sub-clinical disease and maximise production efficiencies.”

Dr McIlmoyle will present new research data, prepared in collaboration with the University of Nottingham and University of Bristol, Duchy College, Micron Bio-systems, and Mole Valley Farmers.

It analyses the grass, maize silage and total mixed ration feeds from 50 farms and shows high levels of pathogenic bacteria, mould and mycotoxin contamination in many samples.

The title of Dr McIlmoyle’s presentation is: ‘How to control the hidden threats of sub-clinical ketosis and mycotoxins in dairy herds’ and will include an overview of sub-clinical ketosis and the benefits of rumen protected choline in the transition period.

“Using rumen protected choline during the transition period can assist as part of a wider control strategy for sub-clinical ketosis, which we believe is having a larger impact on herds than what is believed,” said Dr McIlmoyle.

Dr McIlmoyle will present during London Vet Show on Friday November 21, from 12:25pm to 1:10pm in the BVA Farm Theatre, Olympia Grand, London.
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