The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2018-12-17T05:21:46Z Virbac Australia releases end-of-year findings from its national trace mineral challenge. 2018-12-17T05:21:46Z virbac-australia-releases-end-of-year-findings-from-its-national-trace-mineral-challenge As the year draws to a close, animal health company Virbac Australia has collected all available data on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12-month program which invites seven Multimin challengers to share their learnings as they reveal the benefits of Multimin, a trace mineral injection for livestock. From beef producers in Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania, to a dairy producer in Victoria and a Poll Merino breeder in the Southern Tablelands of NSW, Virbac’s challengers have being trialing Multimin’s effects. The trial has explored improvements in areas like conception rates and immunity, body conformation, carcass weight and characteristics, incidence of diseases, growth rates and conception times. With the assistance of expert mentors, challengers have received 12 months worth of free Multimin product and a tailored nutrition program developed by leading industry mentors. Each program is aligned to each challenger’s goals and ultimately their bottom line, and challengers have been sharing their program results and experiences online at www.multiminchallenge.com. State by state, some of the key highlights include: QLD: Multimin treated heifers have shown an improved immune response to leptospirosis – and results also showed that animals treated with Multimin and 7 in 1 had higher levels of protection. QLD challenger Don McConnel reports that “animals given Multimin had higher mean antibodies to leptospirosis. On visual appraisal, the animals that have been treated in heifer groups also look in noticeably better condition.” Mentor Matt Ball says that “it’s been great working with Don at Mt Brisbane. We are studying conception rates, immunity, and growth and development responses to trace minerals, and we’ve seen very positive results suggesting that animals treated with Multimin and 7 in 1 had higher levels of protection, with on average higher antibodies to leptospirosis. Heifers also seem to be growing better, with a healthier appearance in the treatment group.” WA: When pregnancy-tested in October, challenger Ryan Willing saw above 90% conception in both groups, with the Multimin-treated animals slightly ahead. Challenge mentor Enoch Bergman reports seeing “fantastic results with Ryan’s cattle. Multimin has proven its worth in this instance and reinforced the importance of investing for the future.” VIC: Multimin played a greater role in supporting calves during their first 12 weeks, says challenger mentor Dr Susan Swaney, who reports that “the Multimin Challenge has given people who have never tried it the chance to see how it performs on their property, and we’ve seen some really great results. We certainly saw differences within the first 12 weeks. The treated calves didn’t seem to suffer from the usual gastric signs that the untreated herd had at the time of weaning. Multimin helped with the adjustment to weaner rations, and they went straight on to the new diet without any issues.” NSW: Challenger mentor Dr Elizabeth Bramley describes Multimin’s impact on sheep weight and carcass characteristics: “The focus of trace mineral supplementation has developed beyond merely correcting deficiency symptoms to strategic mineral supplementation, which is aimed at the optimisation of reproductive performance, immune function and growth. This strategic approach can better support improvements in productivity and subsequently profitability.” Next year will bring further results for the Multimin challenge. Data due early in 2019 will include weight measurements and MSA grading in steers, pregnancy-testing cows, calving distribution, liver testing, worm egg counts and conception rates. All these factors will influence the performance of livestock and ultimately enhance producer profitability. Challengers are excited to see the longer-term results as they begin to calculate the cost benefit analysis for producers. Dr Jerry Liu, Livestock Nutrition Product Manager at Virbac Australia summarises the impact of those results: “Previous trials have shown that Multimin is able to improve the performance of livestock in these areas. If this is replicated for our challengers, it will have a significant impact on their bottom line.” Judged by both challenge mentors and the public, the winner will be announced in May 2019 and awarded an ‘experience of lifetime’ prize, specifically tailored to their farming system. Exciting results of the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge will be announced in March 2019. To find out more about how Multimin can improve your livestock performance, contact your local Virbac representative on 1800 242 100. Interested farmers can also sign up for continuing updates on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge at www.multiminchallenge.com About Multimin Virbac's Multimin Injection is a rapidly absorbed source of trace minerals, which can bypass the rumen for direct uptake into the blood in eight hours. The active ingredients are needed for the body to produce two important antioxidants involved in protecting the reproductive and immune systems. For cattle, it is available as a four in one formulation containing copper, selenium, manganese, and zinc. For sheep producers, it is available with or without copper. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: QLD Multimin Challenger, Don McConnel’s Heifers Enoch Bergman and Tony Murdoch Preg-testing at Ryan Willing's, WA Charles Darwin University is the latest to take part in national trace mineral challenge 2018-12-03T02:31:22Z charles-darwin-university-is-the-latest-to-take-part-in-national-trace-mineral-challenge Charles Darwin University (CDU) is expected to announce livestock pregnancy improvements from participation in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12-month program run by animal health company Virbac Australia. The Multimin Performance Ready Challenge gives seven participants the chance to experience first-hand the benefits of Multimin’s trace mineral injection, with assistance from expert mentors. Challengers receive 12 months of free Multimin product and a tailored nutrition program developed by leading industry mentors – and they’ll also be in the running to win the experience of a lifetime, specifically tailored to their farming system. With each challenger sharing their program results and experiences, Charles Darwin University’s Katherine Rural Campus trial site is the latest to take part. Based 16 km north of Katherine, the site is managed by Jessica Di Pasquale, Alison Haines and Noah Taylor, who together operate a Brahman stud and Brahman/cross breed commercial herd from an on-site farm and stud at the University’s training facility. Their goals are to increase fertility, conception and productivity and improve immunity and health, under the expert guidance of Multimin mentor Dr Amanda Dunn from Katherine Veterinary Care Centre. As part of the trial, 92 non-pregnant adult cows have been assigned one of two treatment groups at random, and have been given either Multimin or no Multimin (control herd) four weeks before bulls were introduced in November. In March 2019, all trial animals will be pregnancy-tested, and the resulting data will measure each cow’s pregnancy status, foetus age and animal weight to determine the effect of Multimin trace minerals. As Jessica explains, “Multimin injection has been scientifically proven to top up trace minerals, and we’re looking forward to seeing the results. We’ll be sharing our observations over the coming months – and as previous field trials have proven that breeders treated with Multimin have significantly higher conception rates earlier in the calving season, we’re expecting to see improved conception at first cycle from these latest trials.” Dr Jerry Liu, Livestock Nutrition Product Manager at Virbac Australia described the Multimin Challenge as an “extraordinary opportunity for farmers to learn more about animal nutrition. Trace minerals are essential elements for healthy sheep and cattle, and we know that during high demand periods such as joining, weaning and birthing, animals have higher requirements for certain trace minerals. This is sure to be a fascinating study into the effects of a new strategic approach for optimal performance management.” The Multimin Performance Ready Challenge is also part of Virbac’s ongoing commitment to animal health education, with the company supporting students who have a desire to work in agriculture and rural operations in a number of different ways. Through working with CDU on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, the company encourages school leavers to get involved in agriculture and rural operations through Agricultural Training Colleges to become an ag specialist or prepare for jobs in rural and regional sectors. In addition, WA mentor Enoch Bergman recently gave five young vets from Murdoch University hands-on experience with preg-testing and the chance to learn more about the Multimin Challenge – and Virbac also takes in 2-3 students per year, providing invaluable work experience to help nurture Australia’s next generation of agricultural specialists. To find out more about how Multimin can improve livestock performance, contact your local Virbac representative on 1800 242 100. Interested farmers can also sign up for continuing updates on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge at www.multiminchallenge.com/signup/. About Multimin Virbac's trace mineral injection Multimin 4 in 1 for cattle delivers a balanced ratio of four trace minerals, including selenium, copper, manganese and zinc – while Multimin 3 in 1 injection for sheep and cattle contains selenium, manganese and zinc, bypassing the rumen for direct uptake through the blood in eight hours. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Dr Amanda Dunn and Jessica Beckhouse Charles Darwin University Brahman Cattle Lucky Guyra farmer James Stewart named winner of Virbac Australia’s Tridectin® Platinum Ticket promotion 2018-11-09T04:40:38Z lucky-guyra-farmer-james-stewart-named-winner-of-virbac-australias-tridectin-r-platinum-ticket-promotion Guyra sheep producer James Stewart was one of the first farmers in Australia to purchase Tridectin, the latest sheep drench from Virbac Australia that’s being heralded as a huge break-thru in the fight against worms. Tridectin is the world’s only broad-spectrum combination drench with a registered claim to kill triple-resistant and monepantel-resistant worms. As a result, it provides a reliable, safe and effective worming solution that guarantees healthier, more productive sheep. On opening his pack, James received an extra special surprise. To celebrate Tridectin’s launch, Virbac has been running a special ‘Platinum Ticket’ promotion – and James was one of three lucky winners to find a platinum ticket, which were randomly placed inside the first ever batch of Tridectin. James has won himself a pair of Samsung Gear VR Goggles (as featured in the Tridectin TV commercial) – and Virbac will also be donating $500 to local charity Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service, as nominated by James. Virbac Australia Sheep Product Manager Terrance Laughlin had this to say on James’s win. “This has been a really fun and engaging way to mark the launch of Tridectin. A big well done to James. We hope he’ll get just as much pleasure from using his VR Goggles as he will from seeing the benefits of Tridectin on his animals’ health.” Ends For more information contact: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au QLD Graziers pair up with Virbac Australia to host informative field day 2018-11-07T00:01:40Z qld-graziers-pair-up-with-virbac-australia-to-host-informative-field-day Mt Brisbane Droughtmaster graziers Don and Andrea McConnel are set to host a field day on November 17. Don McConnel is competing in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12 month program run by Virbac Australia that sees seven farmers experience first-hand the benefits of injectable trace minerals with the assistance of expert veterinarian mentors. Mr McConnel said he is looking forward to hosting a field day to give local graziers the opportunity to speak with key company representatives and to trial trusted cattle health products. “The event will cover information on drenches, fly tags and ID tags as well as give fellow graziers the opportunity to trial cattle injectable products that I’ve had fantastic results with on our property,” Mr McConnel said. “I have been fortunate to be selected to compete in the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge and am excited to share my observations so far.” Held from 9.30am on Saturday 17 November 2018, expert guest speakers will cover tick management, chemical use and rotation, fly tags, NLIS and ID tags and insights on the differences Don has seen in his Multimin treated cattle v a non-treated herd. Speakers include Virbac Technical Services Veterinarian Dr Matt Ball, South East Country Veterinarian Dr Bill Roughan, Anthony Feez from Y-TEX, Trevor Wilcox from Zee Tags and Don McConnel. Mr McConnel would like to extend a warm invitation to media to attend this event, and will, of course, provide opportunities for interviews with key stakeholders. What: Multimin Challenger Field Day When: 9.30am on Saturday, 17 November 2018 Where: “Mt Brisbane”, Mt Byron Road, Crossdale QLD 4312 Media Opportunities: Interview and photograph opportunities with: Key speakers Virbac representatives Attendee representatives Click here for further information. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Multimin Challenger Don McConnel NSW sheep grazier trials innovative methods to combat drought 2018-10-30T22:46:06Z nsw-sheep-grazier-trials-innovative-methods-to-combat-drought A NSW sheep grazier has just revealed the details of a new animal health program he’s recently implemented to boost livestock performance in the face of the state’s recent and widespread drought. Farmer Alex Willson and his wife Steph run ‘Kalaree Poll Merino’, a stud in the Southern Tablelands region of NSW. They breed fine/medium Poll Merinos over three properties– yet challenging weather conditions have forced the drought-affected farmer to take new steps to ensure the survival, welfare and profitability of his stock. “Currently we are experiencing a very dry year with just under half of our annual rainfall” says Alex, “and so we’ve implemented a range of measures to combat these difficult conditions and keep our animals alive.” Alex explains how the first of these measures, the introduction of lick feeders, has already had an impact. “Instead of trail feeding, we’ve invested in feeders to give our ewes and growing lambs consistent access to grain, which is a ration of wheat and buffer pellets. Since doing that, we’ve seen a decrease in mis-mothering, a consistent condition score in our ewes, an improvement in milking, and generally better health in both lambs and ewes.” Following advice from Delta Agribusinness agronomist James Cheetham, Alex has planted highly productive grazing crops including Ascend Ryegrass, grazing wheat and Hyola 970 Canola. “These varieties have been better able to make use of what little rain we’ve had this year, providing targeted grazing to carry us through the worst parts of the drought and importantly add value to our business by finishing stock at record prices”. Alex also made the decision to move away from cross-breeds and focus primarily on merinos. “For us it’s about increasing our scale as a single enterprise. Moving to an all merino ewe base enables us to take advantage of their wool and meat production – and we avoid seasonal vulnerabilities and getting caught having to carry ewes and lambs through winter. We also made the decision to sell our cows which has proven a wise move due to the ongoing dry.” He explains how the introduction of a nutritional supplementation program (developed by Matthew Hallam of Landmark) has played an important role in maintaining animal health. “We’ve added AD&E pre -lambing, a starch based loose lick high in calcium and magnesium, and a starch based lick for lambs on grazing crops to improve rumen function.” In addition, Alex is also running his own trial with Multimin trace mineral injection, as part of the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12-month program run by animal health company Virbac Australia. The trial gives a group of seven farmers, including Alex, the chance to experience first-hand the benefits of Multimin injection, with assistance from expert mentors. Challengers receive a tailored nutrition program developed by leading industry mentors – and each challenger is sharing their Multimin program results and experiences on social media (#multiminchallenge), with a winner announced in May 2019 as judged by the challenge mentors and public. Under the supervision of Cooinda Vet Hospital vet Dr Elizabeth Bramley, Alex is currently treating 355 of 710 lambs with Multimin 3 in 1 trace mineral injection for sheep, with the other half used as a control group. After a first treatment in September, they’ll be weighed again next month prior to processing, to measure average weight gain of treated v untreated lambs. Alex is looking forward to gaining greater insight into the effects of using Multimin. “This is set to be a very informative trial, and I’m proud to be a part of this study”, he says. “We’re hoping that Multimin can effectively increase the immunity and production of our lambs, and that we’ll see an increase in weight gain triggered by greater overall health.” Virbac Product Manager and nutritionist Dr Jerry Liu is eager to see the upcoming results. “When used strategically during periods of high demand, Multimin has been shown to optimise fertility and immunity in livestock. However, formally trialing the product in such challenging drought conditions on a real, well-managed property will provide a lot of scientific insight for the future. We should always seek best practice and look for innovative ways to face some of the challenges we have in livestock. The Multimin Performance Ready Challenge is a unique opportunity for innovative graziers like Alex to observe the benefits of following a program like this.” As Jerry explains, Multimin contains three trace minerals that aid in reproduction and immunocompetence, via a balanced ratio of zinc, manganese and selenium that bypasses the rumen for direct uptake from the blood. Multimin is designed to ‘top up’ essential trace mineral levels during high demand periods, such as joining, lambing, weaning and for young growing stock. “Increasing optimal levels of trace minerals in young sheep will have an impact for the farmer’s profitability and return on investment,” he continues. “Multimin assists with improving animal health, and hence maximises their production potential. The Multimin Performance Ready Challenge has given Alex the opportunity to improve both livestock performance and ultimately his financial bottom line.” To find out more about how Multimin can improve livestock performance, contact your local stockist or Vibac on 1800 242 100. Interested farmers can sign up for continuing updates on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge at www.multiminchallenge.com/signup/. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Alex Willson, NSW Multimin Challenger Dr Jerry Liu, Virbac Product Manager and nutritionist WA farmer finds strategic drenching is the key to cattle worm eradication. 2018-09-16T22:39:32Z wa-farmer-finds-strategic-drenching-is-the-key-to-cattle-worm-eradication Internal parasite infestation is the single most important disease faced by Australia’s red meat producers – and for Western Australia, the most damaging worm parasite is the brown stomach worm (Ostertagia ostertagi). Infestation is a particular issue for the region’s wetter south-western areas and on cattle-only properties, and with worms being present in most herds, they can dramatically reduce growth rates, especially in young cattle. The brown stomach worm is particularly prevalent during the winter months, with larvae numbers peaking between May and July. Following higher levels of autumn rainfall, eggs in freshly deposited dung can rapidly increase worm larvae, and the extra worm burden results in a check in growth rates and financially damaging production losses. Cattle showing symptoms of brown stomach worm have ‘ostertagiosis’, and its presence is often signified by symptoms like diarrhoea, reduced appetite and anorexia. With MLA estimates suggesting that effective control of Ostertagia can increase the sale weight of weaners by up to 60 kg[1], the eradication of worm parasites is clearly a financial concern, as well as being an animal health and welfare issue. Dr Matthew Ball, veterinarian of 18 years and Technical Services Manager for animal health company Virbac Australia describes some of the key measures farmers should undertake to prevent worm infection. “Firstly, it’s important to know which types of worms occur on your farm, and the seasons where they pose the highest risk, so you can arm yourself with the knowledge to more effectively combat worms on your property.” He also says that it’s important to regularly monitor the worm status of livestock, especially for higher risk stock like weaners during high risk seasons. Improving their nutrition will also make them better able to fight off a parasite infestation, he reveals. “Next, a quarantine drenching of all new arrivals should be an essential component of your biosecurity plan,” continues Matthew. “When you’re purchasing stock, it’s also a good idea to request an animal health statement. That way you’re clear on the stock vendor’s level of assurance concerning their disease status.” Good grazing management is key, and young animals (who are most vulnerable to worms) should be allocated the lowest contaminated pastures. Finally, he says, strategic drenches at key times of year can make a huge difference. For WA farmers Ryan and Elisha Willing, who run 2,500 hectares 130 km east of Esperance, strategic drenching has been pivotal in their efforts to eradicate worms. As Ryan explains, worms have been a particular problem for their livestock, and their perennial pastures have made their 900 Black Angus breeders and 900 calves more susceptible to ongoing issues with parasite burdens like worms. “Unfortunately, we have pretty much every kind of worm here,” says Ryan. After reading about Cydectin Long Acting Injection for Cattle six years ago, he immediately began using it as part of his strategic drenching program. “Initially I did a small trial with a control group, and I saw a significant growth rate difference. Since then I’ve used it across the board with all my stock.” The product is known for its unbeatable potency and persistency, and it provides the longest protection available against a range of internal and external parasites, including worms. No other endectocide can match Cydectin LA Injectable for lasting control of roundworms (protects for 112 days against Ostertagia), cattle ticks, lice and mites, all without influencing the development of immunity against worms. In an added bonus, Cydectin has no known effect on dung beetles, demonstrated to have no impact on larvae or adult beetle emergence – which means it contributes to cleaner pastures without impacting the role of this important agricultural ecosystem. Ryan describes how his property’s treatment program operates at key moments, twice per year, beginning during weaning in December, which Ryan says is when calves often pick up worms from their mothers. “They’re also going into a high-stress environment after weaning, so this is an important time to gain greater control over their health.” Essentially, treatment during this time prevents larvae developing to adult worms, and a single summer injection with Cydectin LA can greatly inhibit worm contamination. “We use head baling for Cydectin,” he reports, “which is perhaps a bit more time consuming than pour-on, but it’s really not that hard, just a simple injection behind the ear and you’re done.” Ryan’s livestock are again treated in May, as they move into winter. “This together with the first treatment in December is normally sufficient to protectthem through the entire 12 month cycle,” he says. “The best thing about Cydectin LA is that it offers a long-acting, long control period, which is very important for our young cattle, as that’s when they’re growing the hardest. They need all the help they can get at this time, particularly as they’re grazing on tight green pastures during summer.” Ryan says the results with Cydectin have been phenomenal. “We’ve seen fantastic growth rates in our young animals, and also great conception rates amongst our heifers. For me Cydectin LA is one very important part of the big picture – which is keeping the animals healthy, and keeping their growth rate optimal. Our animals just look healthier, their coats are shinier and that’s even been commented on by our suppliers and customers.” Treating for worms at the right time, with the right product will maximise the return on investment – so Virbac Australia recommends using Cydectin LA Injectable when conditions favour them most, particularly during wet conditions. For Technical Services Manager Dr Matthew Ball, this kind of careful, considered approach is fundamental for success. “A strategic worm control program at key moments during the year will effectively reduce the impact of worms, eradicating them from cattle while also minimising the levels of infective worm larvae on pasture. It really is the best form of defense against this potentially devastating disease.” To find out why there’s nothing like Cydectin LA, farmers are encouraged to talk to their local rural supplier. For more information, visit au.virbac.com. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Elisha and Ryan Willing Ryan Willing treating with Cydectin LA Injection for Cattle [1] The MLA Cattle Parasite Atlas (2005) QLD farmer uses tropical grasses to transform his pasture profitability 2018-09-09T20:00:00Z qld-farmer-uses-tropical-grasses-to-transform-his-pasture-profitability A QLD farmer has transformed his cane farm into a thriving cattle business using tropical grasses supplied by proprietary pasture seed company PGG Wrightson Seeds Australia (PGGWSA). Darryl Trimble and his wife Hannah are cattle graziers on ‘Emerson Park’, 26km South of Proserpine, QLD. Their property was previously a cane farm, but to improve enterprise profitability the couple decided to make the switch to cattle. Over the past seven years they have progressively stripped out their cane stocks using PGG Wrightson Seed products to replenish their pastures. The property’s challenging growing conditions made choosing the right types of crops essential. As Darryl explains, their soils are deficient in phosphorus, which can limit pasture growth and yields. In addition, their most recent winter has been the worst in nine years, with the farm suffering from unusually low temperatures and frost. And they were also plagued by sicklepod weeds, where seeds can remain viable for up to 10 years. For these reasons, the couple chose three tropical pastures from PGG Wrightson Seeds to use on their property – Mekong Brizantha, Cardillo Centro and V8 Stylo. Darryl says that “they were all planted for grazing purposes, and initially we mixed the Mekong together with V8, which worked very well. We also chose Cardillo because it’s a high-nitrogen crop that saves me putting nitrogen into the ground as fertiliser.” Darryl also decided to trial Envirogro, a seed treatment that removes the seed kernel from the husk, reducing weed seed and other waste material to improve the quality and flow during sowing. It’s ideal for tropical seeds, and the process can have a noticeable impact on germination and growth rates. Darryl reports exceptional pasture benefits from all three of his tropical pastures. “They’ve demonstrated a very fast strike rate, quick growth, impressive ground cover, and the weight gain in our cattle has been really good. In a very wet year, our cattle don’t tend to do great, but this year they’ve put on more weight than any previous year. Our most recent seven-month F1 Wagyu calves came in at over 200kg – and nutrition-wise they’ve looked great.” Darryl also found that his Mekong pasture proved more than able to handle a bit of waterlogging. “The volume of feed I get out of it is unbelievable, even in wet conditions. It’s a nice soft leaf, and we find that it’s optimised when cattle take the tops off, then we rotate and let them go back to it in about 5 weeks time.” The V8 has been a similar success story. “It’s proven to be fantastic at choking out weeds, and it’s very reliable during the dry season, producing an incredible amount of feed this year, and growing over seven feet high in some places.” Even Cardillo has been worth its weight in gold. “The Cardillo has been a great grower. We threw 1kg into an area approximately the size of a house, and it has now spread to the size of two football fields!” Darryl was also impressed by the results achieved with Envirogro. As he described, “the process has resulted in a better strike rate, plus the ants don’t eat the seeds nearly as much. I’ve also noticed that seedlings look a lot healthier when they come up.” For Darryl, there’s no doubt that introducing these types of grasses has resulted in a healthier, more profitable farm. “I’d definitely recommend these tropical grasses. I’ve had so many people comment that we should get more cattle, so we can fully capitalise on the large amount of feed we’ve got. That to me is a great sign that our feed program is thriving, and these grasses have given us fantastic results in what can often be a challenging growing environment.” PGG Wrightson Seeds agronomists can help farmers create custom mixes and blends to suit any situation. Please visit www.pggwrightsonseeds.com.au to learn more about their tropical seeds, and to find an agronomist in your area. - Ends - For media enquiries: C7EVEN Communications Kate Munsie, 02 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Darryl Trimble with his V8 Stylo crop V8 Stylo crop Control intestinal parasites before Summer hits, even in time of drought. 2018-08-30T03:46:39Z control-intestinal-parasites-before-summer-hits-even-in-time-of-drought Internal parasite infestation has been found to be one of the most significant diseases faced by red meat producers in Australia. According to a recent MLA research project, it’s estimated that internal parasites cost the southern beef industry $82 million per year in lost productivity and treatment[1]. For beef producer Chris Croker, who runs a 2,000 acre property in NSW, the economic impact is all too evident: “Our Hereford cattle are more prone to parasite issues. Round worms and liver fluke are the two main parasites, and they’ve previously caused all kinds of problems with fertility and weight loss, which has impacted our bottom line.” For Chris and cattle producers across the southern beef industry, the most damaging worm species is the Small brown stomach worm (Ostertagia ostertagi), which can have a significant impact on growth rates, health, fertility and milk production by reducing appetite, even in animals that appear healthy. A particularly heavy infestation can cause damage to the fourth stomach, as well as diarrhoea, susceptibility to other diseases and even death. High worm burdens are likely to occur on farms with irrigation and in regions with high rainfall (more than 500-600mm), however drought effected areas can also increase the risk of internal parasites due to grazing behaviour. In dry conditions when there’s less forage to eat, cows will tend to eat the emerging grass next to dung pads which may be infested with larvae. Livestock grazing of short pastures, high stocking rates and set stock grazing situations can also create ideal conditions for worms. Worms can also be more prevalent in young animals, especially after weaning. In summer and autumn or during calving or nutritional stress, infection can lead to a higher risk of herd diseases like type 2 ostertagiasis. The infection risks for bulls are also higher, because bulls have lower immunity to gastrointestinal parasites than steers. And varying weather also plays a role, with hot, humid conditions being ideal for Barber's pole worm, while high winter rainfall can increase the prevalence of Black scour worm and Small brown stomach worm larvae. Virbac Technical Services Manager Susan Swaney describes the key indicators for identifying and diagnosing worms in cattle. “Farmers should look for a history of poor performance, with lower growth rates than expected based on known pasture availability and quality. There are also clinical signs, which can include scouring, weight loss and pale gums and membranes around the eyes, as well as weakness, lethargy or bottle jaw.” Nonetheless, worm faecal egg counts, larval cultures and blood tests for pepsinogen remain the best indicators of worm infection. Dr Swaney explains why. “Knowledge is power, so it’s really important to know which of the important worms types your farm is prone to, and to monitor the worm status of your younger animals regularly, especially during high risk seasons. That way you can be sure they’re eliminated if proven to be a problem.” Dr Swaney also suggests requesting an animal health statement when purchasing stock. “That way you’re clear on the stock vendor’s level of assurance concerning their disease status.” And “a strategic drenching program, which includes an effective quarantine drench of all new arrivals, is one more essential component of a successful farm management plan,” she adds. For beef producer Chris, non-chemical management methods mixed with Cydectin Long Acting Injection for Cattle are important. Chris highlights the benefits of Cydectin Long Acting Injection are two-fold: “I’ve used it since it came onto the market, mainly because of the longer-lasting results compared to other products I’ve tried. Its longevity means I’m often able to cut out any second round worm drench, especially for younger stock,” he explains. There are also advantages when it comes to performance. “There’s no doubt that Cydectin helps with weight gain when given strategically, because when an animal is worm-free, 100% of the nutrients are being used by the animal,” he explains. Using Cydectin Long Acting last spring, Chris reports that it contributed to a weight gain of perhaps as much as 30kg more across 100 days. “Essentially the end results as I see them are stronger weight gain, glossier coats and much better overall health… and that can obviously have a great impact when it’s time to sell the stock,” he adds. The treatment itself has been formulated to be effective against internal parasites like Barbers pole, small brown stomach worm, lung worm, hook worm and whip worm – and the results of recent trials indicate big gains for farmers who use Cydectin Long Acting. Field trials across 24 farms throughout Australia found that on average, cattle treated with Cydectin Long Acting Injection gained an extra 8 kg (10.5%) compared with those treated with doramectin injectable[2]. In an added bonus, the treatment has no known effect on dung beetles, demonstrated to have zero impact on larvae or adult beetle emergence. And while some farmers say that pour-on drenches are easier to administer, for farmer Chris the benefits far outweigh the nominal increase in labour time. “Administering this product in my view is not much different from giving an oral drench. It’s just a case of catching your stock in a head bale and injecting behind the ear. Perhaps a pour-on is easier, but for me they're less effective and so the results will be different.” Virbac Australia’s Dr Swaney has one last word of advice. “Make sure you’re feeding your animals, not their parasites. If you can treat when conditions favour worms or impact a herd’s ability to cope with infestations – especially during drought or times of restricted access to feed – the economic benefits can be significant.” Farmers are encouraged to talk to their local rural supplier to find out why there’s nothing like Cydectin LA. For more information, visit au.virbac.com. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Beef producer Chris Croker Virbac Technical Services Manager Susan Swaney Hereford cattle [1] MLA report B.AHE.0010 (2015). Priority list of endemic diseases for red meat industries. [2] Virbac (2016). Weaner productivity trials New trace mineral trial results indicate further gains using injectable supplement. 2018-08-22T04:12:28Z new-trace-mineral-trial-results-indicate-further-gains-using-injectable-supplement New trace mineral trial results indicate further gains using injectable supplement. WA cattle producer Ryan Willing has just revealed the latest findings from the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12-month trial currently being run by animal health company Virbac Australia. As part of the challenge, seven farmers are testing the livestock benefits of Multimin Trace Mineral Injection, supported by expert advice from a team of veterinary mentors. With the results shared on social media and digital channels, the trial is designed to show Australian beef, sheep and dairy producers how they can use the trace mineral injection to improve livestock performance. Trace mineral may also be referred to as trace element or micro mineral. Together with his wife Elisha, Ryan runs 900 Angus breeders east of Esperance, WA. As he explains, the region’s sand plains are nutrient-deficient, which affects the fertility, weight gain and overall health of their self-replacing-herd: “Our sandy soil leaches just about every nutrient available, so trace elements are the key to unlocking maximum production from our crops. Yet even after topping up nutrient levels to our pastures, I’ve already seen a massive additional benefit from using Multimin.” Ryan’s goal is to use Multimin to increase the fertility, conception rate and productivity of his animals. Guided by advice from mentor Dr Enoch Bergman, his herd has been split into two groups, in order to compare improvements in conception rates and timings. Group 1 has been treated with HyB12 + Cydectin Long Acting Injection, and group 2 with Multimin + HyB12 + Cydectin Long Acting Injection. Cows were treated in early June, four weeks prior to joining. They will then be pregnancy-tested five weeks after joining, in order to measure both conception rates and time of conception – both important markers of fertility and herd profitability. So far, early results indicate strong results for those cows treated with Multimin. Ryan describes how “even though our herd has relied heavily on supplementary feeding this past winter, the Multimin challenge trial cows are looking particularly good. Before I started using Multimin, my yearlings used to look brown and shaggy by the end of winter – but they’re keeping their shiny black coats, which is the first sign of good health. I hope that the next round of results will confirm my feeling that this injection is going to have a really positive impact on both their fertility levels and calving patterns.” Ryan has had previous positive experiences with Multimin. In 2017, treatment of Multimin four weeks from joining lifted the average conception rate in Ryan’s cows from 85% to 92% with a 9-week joining period. Ryan also saw weight gains in his steers by using a combination of Multimin and Cydectin Long Acting Injection as previous results have shown 1 kg/day average from weaning to spring sale. Ryan’s mentor Dr Enoch Bergman is a veterinarian at Swans Veterinary Services, with a particular interest in this field of study, having already sampled thousands of local animals in an effort to benchmark trace mineral status for targeted supplementation. He explains the importance of improving calving patterns in a self-replacing herd like Ryan’s. “Firstly, it is critical that calving aligns with optimal seasonal pasture availability, in order to maximize calf weaning weights, breeder’s lifetime fertility and the producer’s ability to capitalize on market opportunities. Our intervention doesn’t stop with choosing the best mating date, we must actively ensure that each breeding animal is given the best chance to fall pregnant each time she cycles. Cows which fall pregnant early in the mating program go on to calve earlier, and are therefore better prepared for their next mating, not only increasing their longevity within the production system, but also the weaned weight of their calves. Adequate micromineral levels are a key prerequisite to the optimisation of both the body condition score and plane of nutrition of each breeder, paramount to achieving the goal of a short fast calving season. Enoch actively advocates joining heifers for shorter periods and ahead of each producer’s older management groups. “If naturally mating, I advocate joining heifers for three weeks shorter as well as three weeks earlier than their cow mobs. This will buy the heifer more time after she calves to prepare herself for her second mating season.” Dr Bergman describes, earlier cycling and improved conception rates can be achieved by optimising health and growth through better nutrition. “For most of my clients, integrating a rapid trace mineral top up of zinc, manganese, selenium, cobalt and copper at weaning and again prior to mating will improve reproductive outcomes, as well as contributing to growth, a functioning immune system, and greater disease resilience, all leading to improved future fertility prospects.” And while variable/reduced feed intake, feed antagonists and low trace mineral absorption in the gut can all make oral supplements less effective, Multimin is able to effectively bypass these challenges, being an injectable rather than oral trace mineral. Dr Bergman also describes how the trace minerals found in Multimin can benefit both mother and unborn calf. “Not only do appropriate levels of microminerals improve conception and the retention of pregnancies, the unborn calf’s micromineral reserves are set up in utero, contributed from its mother’s reserves. Setting the mother up properly helps to set up the next generation.” Dr Bergman is encouraged by the early results of the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge. “It was really exciting to see obvious pigment changes in Ryan’s cattle when comparing the treated with the non-treated animals within the same management group. This really highlights the value of controlled studies. I am looking forward to getting in behind Ryan and Elisha’s cows at preg testing, to see if we can measure some fertility differences as well.” “It’s fascinating to be able to witness first-hand some of the benefits that Multimin is delivering,” he concludes. “I’m enjoying working with Ryan to further document the value that Multimin can deliver to our nation’s beef producers.” To find out more about how Multimin can improve your livestock performance, contact your local Virbac representative on 1800 242 100. Farmers can also follow the trials at www.multiminchallenge.com Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Beef producers Ryan and Elisha Willing with mentor Enoch Bergman Multimin treated versus non-treated Angus cows Concord II: the increasingly popular all-rounder for Spring paddocks. 2018-08-13T22:16:35Z concord-ii-the-increasingly-popular-all-rounder-for-spring-paddocks For farmers looking to fill a potential feed gap over the Summer months, an Italian ryegrass called Concord II, which has been developed by seed company PGG Wrightson Seeds, is enjoying increasing popularity amongst Australian farmers. As PGG Wrightson Seeds Pasture Agronomist Matt Carracher explains, recent environmental conditions have created a greater than usual requirement for the strategic planting of ryegrasses like Concord II. “Due to the relative lack of rain, an increase in insect numbers and a recent cold snap, many farmers are looking for fast and easy Winter feed solutions. It means we’re seeing a lot of cereals being sown lately – but their early finish creates a feed gap. Spring sowing with an Italian ryegrass can help to fill that gap.” It’s not only the planting of Winter crops that can create sparse Spring paddocks. Everything from increased pugging and insect pressure to the spraying of weeds can lead to reduced plant numbers. For Matt, these are all conditions where the introduction of an Italian ryegrass like Concord II can help. “Spring-sown grasses tend to perform very well, because the days are getting longer, soil temperatures are rising, and weeds and insects are easier to control, which leads to much better establishment,” says Matt. With many previous Italian ryegrasses generally offering good seedling vigour, but inferior persistence, Concord II is much more resilient and flexible, allowing it to be used in many more situations, as Matt describes. “Concord II is bred for its speed of establishment. It’s very fast out of the ground, which means farmers can have the paddock back in rotation very quickly. It’s also able to persist into the second year, unlike some other Italian ryegrass. And being a diploid ryegrass, it’s very hardy, and will stand up to challenging conditions.” Concord II is a late-heading variety and remains vegetative quite late in the season, retaining high levels of energy and protein – and that’s great for everything from liveweight gain to putting milk in the vat. Dairy producer Jed Boshier at “Boshier Farms” in the Timboon District of Western Victoria has already experienced the benefits of Spring-sowing Concord II. “Concord II has given us top quality silage and hay to fill the Summer feed gap. Plant growth was certainly better than we expected during last Spring. It has proved great for milk production and growth rates in our younger stock”. Jed planted Concord II for dryland dairy pastures in late August, which yielded 10 tonnes per hectare over the season. “I like the Italian ryegrass because of its fast establishment, high regrowth rates and its ability to persist under moderate heat stress. It has made great quality silage, some of the best we’ve ever cut. We also were able to take a second cut of hay before Christmas and fed young stock on returned regrowth later in the Summer.” “Harvesting good quality silage is one thing we can control, and if we do this right, then we know we’ve got guaranteed milk production in unfavourable conditions. I would also recommend Spring-sowing Concord II as a beneficial option for cattle or sheep producers. It’s a great variety of grass that produces high quality feed right through the Summer in favourable conditions.” Concord II’s vigorous establishment means that farmers can Spring-sow with greater confidence, knowing that the grass will establish early, before it gets too dry over the Summer. Matt points out, however, that hot, dry conditions can prove challenging for the persistence of Italian ryegrass through Summer. “In some more unforgiving environments, it may be more beneficial to consider planting a perennial ryegrass or Summer crop. Your local PGG Wrightson Seeds Sales Agronomist can help you determine the best approach for your needs.” Paddock preparation also plays a major part in the success of any pasture, and Matt says it’s worth remembering that “the best performing pastures are those which are sown into a good seedbed, with optimal soil fertility, ph levels and weed and insect control.” And because early grazing management also has a large bearing on increased yield and productivity, he also recommends a light grazing across the establishing pasture, ideally at the early tillering stage. To find out more about how Concord II can benefit your pasture system, visit www.pggwrightsonseeds.com.au or speak to one of PGG Wrightson Seeds’ pasture agronomists on 1800 619 910. Ends. For media enquiries: C7EVEN Communications Adam Arndell, 02 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 adam.arndell@c7even.com.au C7EVEN Communications Kate Munsie, 0421 935 843 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Concord II Ryegrass Matt Carracher, PGG Wrightson Seeds Pasture Agronomist With the Spring rise in cattle tick around the corner, one QLD beef producer is finding a new way to fight back 2018-08-13T01:17:41Z with-the-spring-rise-in-cattle-tick-around-the-corner-one-qld-beef-producer-is-finding-a-new-way-to-fight-back A recent MLA research project has estimated that cattle ticks cost Australian farms around $156 million per year in production losses and treatment costs[1]. Cattle ticks are amongst the most economically damaging of parasites, and if left unchecked, they can significantly reduce cattle live-weight gain and conception rates. Cattle ticks are also responsible for transmitting tick fever, which causes a loss of condition, illness and in severe cases even death. Peak sales of cattle tick products often occur in Summer/Autumn when cattle producers see heavy tick burdens. With each female tick laying up to 3,000 eggs, beginning a control program earlier, such as in Spring, is a more effective control strategy. Ticks spend approximately 21 days feeding on the animal before falling off to lay eggs. A strategic tick program should prevent ticks laying eggs onto pasture for as long as possible. Unfortunately, the majority of registered products have relatively short protection claims against cattle tick. Even newer chemicals such as fluazuron have developed resistance in many tick areas of Australia. This resistance is seen as a shortened protection period. Beef producers like Richard Cox, who runs “Cracow Station” 60km south east of Theodore, QLD are discovering new ways to fight back. Owning and managing 26,000 acres with 5,000 head of cattle, including 1,600 breeders and 1,300 mixed breed and Droughtmaster cross, Richard’s beef cattle property has been particularly susceptible to tick infestation. “In this area, it’s pretty much a given that cattle will have a tick issue, as well as worms. We did some dung sampling and worm counts, and soon realised that we need to treat for these parasites,” he says. With a change in season from winter to spring, the problem often escalates, as Richard continues. “We tend to find that these parasites are seasonal – but up here, we need to stay on top of this problem through most of the year.” Seasonal change isn’t the only trigger for parasite prevalence, as Richard goes on to explain. “If cattle are light, the weather is dry, or animals are calving, everything attacks them. The parasite burden increases when an animal doesn’t have its usual ability to fight them.” With cattle tick control often aimed at preventing the ‘spring rise’, a strategic treatment program can be started from early September. Following a recommendation by a fellow beef producer, two years ago Richard began a treatment program using Virbac’s Cydectin Long Acting Injection for Cattle. The treatment is effective against sensitive strains of the parasites like cattle ticks, mites and lice, as well as internal parasites like Barber’s pole, small brown stomach worm, lung worm, hook worm and whip worm. Thanks to a unique formulation, it prolongs the release of moxidectin, providing a higher plasma concentration of moxidectin for longer – and the results of recent trials indicate big gains for farmers who use Cydectin Long Acting to treat tick-prone cattle. A pen trial conducted in QLD found that Cydectin Long Acting prevented the development of viable cattle ticks for at least 51 days, and suppressed egg laying for at least 65 days[2]. Additionally, field trials across 10 farms found that on average, cattle treated with Cydectin Long Acting Injection gained an extra 8 kg (10.5%) compared with those treated with doramectin injectable2. There is no known resistance in cattle ticks to the active ingredient in Cydectin LA. In an added bonus, Cydectin Long Acting Injection has no known effect on dung beetles, as demonstrated in a trial3 that showed no impact on larvae or adult beetle emergence – which means it contributes to cleaner pastures without impacting the role of this important agricultural ecosystem. For beef producer Richard Cox, that has certainly been the case. “Our paddocks have never been cleaner,” he says. “We’ve actually been able to reduce treatment, and in some paddocks, Cydectin has been so effective that we haven’t seen a tick, or had to treat in two years.” As its name hints, persistence and potency is something else Richard has noticed since introducing Cydectin Long Acting. “In some paddocks I would say my animals remain tick free for close to three months,” he reports. “Our worm burden has been brought right down since we introduced Cydectin Long Acting. We’re also using it in conjunction with Multimin to top up trace minerals – and we’ve definitely noticed improved weight gain in our weaners, irrespective of season. They tend to have a cleaner coat, and they generally look much healthier. We’ve done trials ourselves, and the results all show increased weight gain since we started.” “The combination of Cydectin Long Acting and Multimin has certainly paid for itself. If you look at the impact of ticks and worms, and the costs in terms of production losses, the effectiveness and longevity of Cydectin Long Acting makes it a no-brainer for producers like me.” For Virbac Technical Services Manager Matt Ball, the approaching change of season means producers should begin thinking now about a cattle tick management program. “It’s a good idea to have a plan in place sooner rather than later. Cattle producers should brace themselves for another bumper year for cattle ticks. By understanding the problem and the best disease-control strategy, they’ll be better placed to implement the right management practices to minimise risk and maximise the health and profitability of their herd.” Farmers are encouraged to talk to their local rural supplier and find out why there’s nothing like Cydectin Long Acting Injection for Cattle. For more information, visit au.virbac.com. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Beef producer Richard Cox Droughtmaster cattle [1] MLA report B.AHE.0010 (2015). Priority list of endemic diseases for red meat industries. [2] Virbac (2016). Weaner productivity trials. 3 Virbac data on file Multimin Performance Ready Challenger shares his first round of highly encouraging results. 2018-07-22T22:29:35Z multimin-performance-ready-challenger-shares-his-first-round-of-highly-encouraging-results Queensland cattle producer Don McConnel has just announced his first observations from the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge, a 12-month program run by animal health company Virbac Australia. Virbac's 4 in 1 trace mineral injection, Multimin for Cattle, delivers a balanced ratio of four trace minerals (selenium, copper, manganese and zinc), bypassing the rumen for direct uptake through the blood in eight hours. The Multimin Performance Ready Challenge gives seven Australian farmers the chance to experience first-hand the benefits of Multimin’s trace mineral injection, with assistance from expert mentors. Challengers receive 12 months of free Multimin product and a tailored nutrition program developed by leading industry mentors – and they’ll also be in the running to win an overseas trip tailored to their farming system. With each challenger sharing their program results and experiences online, Don has been paying particular attention to how Multimin contributes to increased fertility, immunity, and productivity, supported by expert advice from mentor Dr Matt Ball. Operating from Mt Brisbane, a 4,500-hectare breeding and fattening operation in the Brisbane Valley, Don manages the day-to-day running of his family’s purebred Droughtmaster cattle and stud operation. Following the implementation of improved herd and pasture management, the property has already noticed improvements in pregnancy testing rates. Yet, the addition of strategic trace mineral injections may provide additional productivity improvements. With the inclusion of Multimin for Cattle, Don hopes to lift pregnancy test rates above 95%, while also improving compliance rates on steers graded for MSA. Having treated half of his herd of maiden heifers with Multimin Injection for Cattle last month (with the other half acting as the control herd), Don has already seen a noticeable difference in the treated animals compared to the control group. “Clean coats indicate good heath, and it was noted that the vast majority of the treated mob had much shinier coats than the control mob. This means that our Multimin-treated heifers are maintaining better condition through winter, so that come spring, they’ll respond quicker to the better feed available to them. This being the time when we’ll be joining them, they should get in calf more quickly. We’re really happy with the obvious visual differences already seen, and we look forward to seeing the other results as the heifers continue to grow.” Virbac technical vet Dr Matt Ball spoke of his reaction to the initial observations. “We have seen rapid improvements in the treated animal coats within 4 weeks. The skin is the largest organ of the body and what we can see on the outside reflects improvements occurring on the inside. Multimin is formulated to rapidly top up liver stores of trace minerals which are then used to optimise essential enzyme systems throughout the body. We end up with a healthier, more fertile animal – ready to perform”. Dr Ball continues, “It's really worth implementing a Multimin program to help influence the fertility and immunity of younger animals. Heifers that calve early their first time, will always calve early and will always be more fertile. One of the first things farmers notice when they implement a Multimin fertility program is that their calves are born closer together. This observational evidence is backed up by both Australian and international studies which have demonstrated a 10-13% improvement in calving patterns. Multimin’s benefits to immunity keep young cattle healthier, reduce disease, lower number of treatments and improve response to vaccines”. For Dr Ball, the benefits of a Multimin program are clear. “The sort of program being implemented at Mt Brisbane and by other producers is about investing for the future. Optimal levels of trace minerals in young cattle and breeding animals protects their performance over time. If farmers can recognise a period when their stock's nutritional demand is high, and target those times, Multimin will help alleviate those pressures and boost long-term productivity. Multimin has proven benefits when used around weaning, pre-joining and pre-calving”. To find out more about how Multimin can improve your livestock performance, contact your local Virbac representative on 1800 242 100. Interested farmers can sign up for continuing updates on the Multimin Performance Ready Challenge at www.multiminchallenge.com/signup/. Ends Media Enquiries: Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Don McConnel with Multimin mentor Matt Ball Multimin treated vs non-treated Droughtmaster cattle Multimin Injection for Cattle Multimin Performance Ready Challenge logo Scholarship to remember leading researcher 2018-06-21T02:40:11Z scholarship-to-remember-leading-researcher-1 THE Australian animal health industry has rallied behind the call to establish a scholarship celebrating the memory of one of the country’s most accomplished livestock scientists, Ms Kristina Hacket. Ms Hacket, who passed away last November aged 50 after a year-long battle with brain cancer, was principal researcher at Elanco Animal Health for the past 21 years. Her endeavours resulted in the commercial release of several innovative technologies that improve the health, productivity and welfare of animals in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America. To honour Kristina’s dedication to research in the animal health sector, her many friends and colleagues are raising $140,000 to establish a merit-based scholarship for women studying agriculture, veterinary or animal sciences at the University of Sydney. Elanco Animal Health and Virbac Animal Health have each donated $30,000 and are joined by not only individual contributors from Kristina’s wide circle of family and friends, but also member companies of the Veterinary Manufacturers & Distributors Association. This broad industry support is testimony to the foresight, leadership and commitment to diversity in animal health of the contributing organisations. Elanco ANZ Director, Bruce Bell, says his organisation is pleased to support the initiative. “Kristina drew enormous respect for her intellect, thoroughness and integrity, both inside and outside the company, and made a significant contribution to this business through her commitment to excellence,” Bruce says. “Personally, she was a caring, thoughtful and loyal colleague and friend to so many of us – a pleasure to work with and alongside”. Virbac Director of Commercial Excellence for the SANZA Region, Sarah Hunter, a classmate at The University of Sydney, says Kristina was a lifelong friend and treasured colleague throughout the animal health sector. “Kristina inspired many of us working in agriculture, veterinary science and the animal health industry,” Sarah says. “A quiet achiever, her impact on many reached beyond the professional”. After completing a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture (Animal Husbandry) at the University of Sydney in 1988, Kristina forged a life-long career within the animal health industry. After four years as a Development Virologist and Quality Manager with Cyanamid Websters (later Fort Dodge Animal Health), Kristina joined Elanco Animal Health in 1996 and spent the next 21 years in various research and development roles. Commencing as a Clinical Research Associate, she steadily rose through the ranks to become Clinical Research Manager of the company’s Australian research and regulatory team and then its ANZ Research Hub. She was responsible for the planning and implementation of pre-clinical and clinical studies to support the registration of numerous products used in sheep, cattle, pigs, poultry and companion animals. Together with fellow Elanco researchers, Drs Barry Lowe (deceased) and Jim Rothwell (now a program manager with Meat & Livestock Australia), Kristina played a key role in the development and registration of the well-known sheep lousicides, Extinosad Eliminator and Extinosad Pour-On. The trio co-authored several scientific articles and patents relating to the use of spinosad in livestock, formulation technology and delivery systems. Further support from members of the agricultural and animal health industries is required for the target to be achieved. To donate to the Kristina Hacket Memorial Scholarship, visit crowdfunding.sydney.edu.au/project/9117 - Ends – Media Enquiries: C7EVEN Communications Kate Munsie Adam Arndell (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 (02) 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au adam.arndell@c7even.com.au Photo caption: Ms Kristina Hacket Scholarship to remember leading researcher 2018-06-20T21:58:26Z scholarship-to-remember-leading-researcher THE Australian animal health industry has rallied behind the call to establish a scholarship celebrating the memory of one of the country’s most accomplished livestock scientists, Dr Kristina Hacket. Dr Hacket, who passed away last November aged 50 after a year-long battle with brain cancer, was principal researcher at Elanco Animal Health for the past 21 years. Her endeavours resulted in the commercial release of several innovative technologies that improve the health, productivity and welfare of animals in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America. To honour Kristina’s dedication to research in the animal health sector, her many friends and colleagues are raising $140,000 to establish a merit-based scholarship for women studying agriculture, veterinary or animal sciences at the University of Sydney. Elanco Animal Health and Virbac Animal Health have each donated $30,000 and are joined by not only individual contributors from Kristina’s wide circle of family and friends, but also member companies of the Veterinary Manufacturers & Distributors Association. This broad industry support is testimony to the foresight, leadership and commitment to diversity in animal health of the contributing organisations. Elanco ANZ Director, Bruce Bell, says his organisation is pleased to support the initiative. “Kristina drew enormous respect for her intellect, thoroughness and integrity, both inside and outside the company, and made a significant contribution to this business through her commitment to excellence,” Bruce says. “Personally, she was a caring, thoughtful and loyal colleague and friend to so many of us – a pleasure to work with and alongside”. Virbac Director of Commercial Excellence for the SANZA Region, Sarah Hunter, a classmate at The University of Sydney, says Kristina was a lifelong friend and treasured colleague throughout the animal health sector. “Kristina inspired many of us working in agriculture, veterinary science and the animal health industry,” Sarah says. “A quiet achiever, her impact on many reached beyond the professional”. After completing a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture (Animal Husbandry) at the University of Sydney in 1988, Kristina forged a life-long career within the animal health industry. After four years as a Development Virologist and Quality Manager with Cyanamid Websters (later Fort Dodge Animal Health), Kristina joined Elanco Animal Health in 1996 and spent the next 21 years in various research and development roles. Commencing as a Clinical Research Associate, she steadily rose through the ranks to become Clinical Research Manager of the company’s Australian research and regulatory team and then its ANZ Research Hub. She was responsible for the planning and implementation of pre-clinical and clinical studies to support the registration of numerous products used in sheep, cattle, pigs, poultry and companion animals. Together with fellow Elanco researchers, Drs Barry Lowe (deceased) and Jim Rothwell (now a program manager with Meat & Livestock Australia), Kristina played a key role in the development and registration of the well-known sheep lousicides, Extinosad Eliminator and Extinosad Pour-On. The trio co-authored several scientific articles and patents relating to the use of spinosad in livestock, formulation technology and delivery systems. Further support from members of the agricultural and animal health industries is required for the target to be achieved. To donate to the Kristina Hacket Memorial Scholarship, visit crowdfunding.sydney.edu.au/project/9117 - Ends – Media Enquiries: C7EVEN Communications Kate Munsie Adam Arndell (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 (02) 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au adam.arndell@c7even.com.au Photo caption: Dr Kristina Hacket Farmers should act now to tackle liver fluke disease 2018-05-24T01:57:03Z farmers-should-act-now-to-tackle-liver-fluke-disease Autumn is here – which makes now a critical time for farmers to address liver fluke disease among their cattle, says Michael Chambers, Director of Invetus, Australasia’s largest veterinary contract research organisation. Liver fluke infects cattle and sheep, but often goes undiagnosed because it shows no obvious signs or symptoms. Most of the damage is caused during the earliest stages of the parasite's development, as it travels through the animal's liver – and its impact can cause significant losses, with an estimated $50-$80 million per year in productivity losses alone[1]. As Michael explains, early May is the optimal time to treat cattle, as this is when liver fluke are most likely to be maturing to two weeks old – which is its youngest treatable stage: “Autumn is the best time to begin treatment, as it’s when the largest amount of immature fluke are found in the animal. This immature stage of the parasite is the most destructive to cattle, as the fluke migrate through the liver, causing hemorrhaging and scarring along the way – so it’s vital to begin treatment before they can do too much damage.” Michael also points out that tackling the problem now “will also ensure that animals don’t need to be treated so often, which is often the case with products that only target the adult stage of fluke.” There’s another reason why treatment at this time is so helpful, as Michael continues: “Treatment now will also ensure that animals are not carrying a fluke burden over winter, when pastures can be of low quality and quantity.” Farmers can take various steps to help control liver fluke at this time – one of which being the importance of good grazing management. “Keeping animals out of swampy areas with fencing helps to break the liver fluke lifecycle. This, combined with using drenches at strategic times of the year, such as autumn – as well as knowing via monitoring what fluke drenches work on each property – are all crucial for effective fluke control.” While triclabendazole was introduced as the main drench treatment 30 years ago, triclabendazole-resistance can be a challenge for farmers wanting to protect their herd. Invetus has lately been involved with the identification of triclabendazole-resistance on cattle properties, as well as the implementation of new control programs – and Michael says that this has “allowed farmers to obtain much better fluke control, reducing the negative impacts on the cattle and bringing down the overall prevalence of liver fluke on a property.” Triclabendazole-resistance has also led animal health company Virbac Australia to create two products, which are effective even against triclabendazole-resistant strains. Most importantly, they’re able to target immature fluke as young as 2 weeks old, as well as early immature and adult liver fluke. Nitromec is the world’s first triple combination injection for cattle, and Virbac’s latest fluke treatment NitroFluke contains a unique combination of nitroxynil and clorsulon, to provide a best-practice 3-stage control including the dangerous 2 week old fluke. NitroFluke can also be used alongside other worm treatments, such as Cydectin Inject or Cydectin Long Acting – and Virbac are the only company with products registered against 2-week-old fluke, making their products an indispensable part of any successful control program. As Michael states, liver fluke’s impact on the growth rates and fertility makes them “one of the most pathogenic internal parasites of cattle in the temperate regions of Australia. Considering the current high price of cattle, any reduction of these factors has a direct financial impact on the farmer,” he adds. “Early fluke control helps improve weight gain, ensuring that steers reach their target weight more quickly, while also supporting the health of heifers and cows, both at joining and calving. All these efforts improve the overall health of the animals, which ultimately brings more money to the farmer. Taking action now really is a win-win, both for the animals and the overall success of a farm.” For more information on Virbac’s liver fluke control programs, please visit au.virbac.com. Ends Media Enquiries: Adam Arndell - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 adam.arndell@c7even.com.au Kate Munsie - C7EVEN COMMUNICATIONS (02) 6766 4513 / 0421 935 843 kate.munsie@c7even.com.au Photo captions: Michael Chamber, Invetus Angus cattle grazing [1] Dr. Joseph C. Boray. Liver fluke disease in sheep and cattle. NSW Agriculture Agfacts 1999.