Statement from Deputy Mayor Neil Brown on the confirmation of Mycoplasma bovis on a farm in the district

10/01/2018 10:30 a.m.

Wednesday 10 January, 2018

I was deeply upset to hear that a farm in our district had tested positive for the cattle disease, Mycoplasma bovis.

It is a very worrying time for the farming community and I offer my sympathy to those with animals who have this devastating disease.

If you know people who are directly affected by the discovery of M.Bovis, please give them your support to help them through this difficult time. The Rural Support Trust and industry groups such as Federated Farmers and Dairy NZ are also helping farmers who are dealing with the disease.

I know all dairy farmers in our district will be concerned but they should be reassured by the fact that the spread of M.bovis usually requires prolonged contact with an infected animal. MPI is still working on tracing contacts of infected cattle, so if you don’t hear from them, “no news is good news”. The milk companies are also distributing test kits for sick animals and they will be handing these out at a public meeting in Methven and another in Ashburton on 11 January.

Good hygiene practices are crucial on farms at all times but if there are areas where you can make improvements, now is the time to do it. It is also important to keep your NAIT and general farm records up-to-date.

If vets and AI technicians are visiting your property, make sure they thoroughly clean their equipment before they arrive and again before they leave. You might want to consider making a footbath and scrubbing brush available for the boots of all visitors as they enter and leave your farm. Likewise, if you are visiting a neighbour, clean your boots and any gear you are taking with you.

To find out more about M.bovis and issues such as farm hygiene visit the MPI website Farmers with any concerns or questions can ring MPI on 0800 00 83 33.

The Mayor (who is currently overseas) and I will be in regular contact with MPI to stay informed about this issue and will be doing all we can to support affected farmers and their families.

Page reviewed: 10 Jan 2018 11:15am