AHI Newsletter Winter 2018 FINAL

ANIMAL HEALTH IRELAND Contributing to a profitable and sustainable farming and agri-food sector through improved animal health WINTER EDITION Stakeholders' NEWSLETTER

Events and Media

P5

Focus on TWG Members

P10

Catherine McAloon CalfCare and CellCheck Technical Working Groups Mark Robinson Parasite Control Technical Working Group

AHI Programme Updates P11

CellCheck | BVD | Johne’s Disease | IBR

Animal Health Ireland, 4-5 The Archways, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim, N41 WN27 Phone 071 9671928 Email nmorgan@animalhealthireland.ie www.AnimalHealthIreland.ie

AHI gratefully acknowledges the financial and other contributions of our stakeholders.

Contributing to a profitable and sustainable farming and agri-food sector through improved animal health

Animal Health Ireland, 4-5 The Archways, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim, N41 WN27 Phone 071 9671928 Email nmorgan@animalhealthireland.ie

CONTENTS

04 05 10 11 14 18 20

Introduction

Events and Media

Focus on Technical Working Group Members

CellCheck

BVD

Johne’s Disease

IBR

Introduction

Dr David Graham, CEO, Animal Health Ireland

W elcome to the latest edition of the Animal Health Ireland stakeholders’ newsletter providing an update on a range of activities in support of our programmes for Quarter 4 of 2018. This has been a period of intense activity in a number of programmes, as described in detail in the various reports. A key development during this quarter was the conclusion by the Johne’s Disease Implementation Group of the structure of Phase 2 of the Irish Johne’s Disease Control Programme (IJCP). This provides a framework for herd engagement following registration over a four-year period, providing clarity in the medium term for herds that register to participate through the AHI website. Significant supports for the programme are available from both milk processors, as a contribution to the cost of whole herd testing, and from DAFM, covering the costs of veterinary risk assessments and management plans (VRAMPs), ancillary testing following ELISA-positive results and further veterinary herd investigation following positive ancillary test results. Collectively, these supports cover a significant proportion of costs for herds that register with the programme, and provide the basis for engagement of a significant proportion of the dairy sector with the IJCP in the coming years. A key initiative launched as part of the CellCheck programme during this period was the ‘Dry Cow Consult’ for herd owners. This was backed by an extensive training programme for veterinary practitioners, database development and a series of on-farm events, to promote the practice of selective dry cow therapy. A further key activity during this quarter was the CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards, which again recognised the Top 500 individual producers and in addition introduced discussion group categories for the first time. These discussion group awards were well received and we look forward to even greater levels of interest and engagement for 2019. As described in detail in the BVD programme report, further significant progress has been made, with an overall prevalence of PI calves born in 2018 of only 0.06%. A key focus of the Technical Working Group, and subsequently the Implementation Group, during 2018 has been the identification of measures to further enhance progress toward eradication, leading to the adoption of a number of additional measures for 2019, including some key changes in relation to the provision and timing of support payments and herd restrictions. Activity on IBR continues, with results now emerging from a pilot beef programme being run in conjunction with the BETTER Farm Beef Programme, and work continuing on the development of a national IBR model to inform programme options. During this period, the recruitment of a new Beef HealthCheck programme manager was also completed, with the candidate taking up their position in early 2019. As we look back on 2018 as a whole, it is satisfying to note significant progress across our range of activities. We look forward to continuing this progress 2019, despite the inevitable challenges, acknowledging the support of stakeholders, without which this would not be possible.

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AHI STAKEHOLDER NEWSLETTER | WINTER EDITION

Events and Media

Gráinne Dwyer, Communications and Event Manager

AHI activities over the last three months have been frenetic with our involvement in the delivery of an extensive training schedule, a series of on-farm events and the organisation and delivery of our yearly flagship event, the

CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards. CellCheck On-Farm Events

To support the work of the CellCheck Technical Working Group and Implementation Group in the development of the concept of a ‘Drying off Strategy’ which is designed to support farmers in their decision making with regard to the drying off of dairy cows, a series of 13 on-farm events were held throughout the country over a four week period commencing on October 19th. The events were jointly organised with Teagasc and were supported by 10 Dairy Processors.

Finola McCoy presenting at the CellCheck on-farm event in Limerick.

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Events and Media

The on-farm events served to introduce the idea of planning the drying off process of individual cows using the tools available in terms of milking recording and Coop performance reports to determine the most suitable treatment plan. In addition, three other topics were included on the programme: managing in-calf heifers to minimise the risk of mastitis; the skills of drying off cows safely; the nutrition and management of the cow during the dry period for optimum performance in the next lactation. Speakers included Finola McCoy, Programme Manager, CellCheck TWG members and Teagasc staff. These on-farm events also gave us the opportunity to promote a service, provided by trained veterinary practitioners under the TASAH programme, called ‘Dry Cow Consult’. The funding afforded farmers the chance to avail of a three hour consult with a veterinary practitioner to advise and develop their herd-specific ‘drying off strategy’.

Photos from the CellCheck on-farm events around the country.

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AHI STAKEHOLDER NEWSLETTER | WINTER EDITION

Events and Media

CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards The CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards ceremony was held in the Lyrath Hotel, Kilkenny on the 29th of November. It is an initiative to recognise and reward the excellence of Irish farmers who are currently achieving high standards of udder health on their farm and awards are given to the 500 suppliers nationally with the lowest weighted annual average somatic cell count. Since the inception of the Awards, the maximum SCC of award recipients has fallen each year from 103,000 cells/mL in 2014 to 72,000 cells/mL in 2017. All 15 Co-ops that submitted data to DAFM had representatives in the ‘Best 500’ category. In addition to the individual Awards being presented, two new discussion group categories were introduced for 2018 – Most Improved Group and Best SCC Group. The winners in both categories were announced at the Awards ceremony. The CFS Discussion Group from Kerry won the Most Improved Group while the Pastures Apprentices Discussion Group took the Best SCC Group Award. The judges – George Ramsbottom (Teagasc), Kevin Downing (ICBF) and Finola McCoy (AHI) used the information submitted on the application form and information accessed from ICBF and Teagasc systems to identify the winners. As part of the programme of events, Matt O’Keeffe, editor of Irish Farmer’s Monthly facilitated a panel discussion on ‘the future is bright for Irish dairy farming’ which included Finola McCoy (CellCheck Programme Manager), Zoe Kavanagh, (CEO, NDC), Padraig Brennan (Meat, Food and Beverages Director, with Bord Bia) and John Matthews (FSAI). The programme concluded with the presentation of a special award to the supplier from each of the 15 milk processors with the best SCC for 2016. Over 600 winners, their partners, sponsors and industry representatives attended the ceremony, which was sponsored by FBD Insurance and supported by Ornua.

Representatives of AHI, Teagasc, Dairy Coop representatives and FBD with some of the winners of the CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards including the 'Most Improved' Discussion Group.

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AHI STAKEHOLDER NEWSLETTER | WINTER EDITION

Events and Media

Training As part of the Rural Development Plan 2014-2020, co-funded by the Irish government and the EU, funding has been provided for a Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH), delivered by trained veterinary practitioners. AHI has been delivering this specialist training for the last 3 years predominantly on BVD and JD. However, this autumn a series of TASAH training events was offered to veterinary practitioners working with dairy farmers in the area of udder health. Eight training sessions were delivered and it is hoped to offer this training again in autumn 2019. In addition to the CellCheck TASAH training, eight Johne’s disease TASAH training sessions were delivered in November. This training was open to all Approved Veterinary Practitioners (AVPs) and previously TASAH trained AVPs under the Irish Johne’s Control Programme. It provided themwith an opportunity to gain further information and knowledge on the IJCP more generally. In addition to the TASAH training, two additional training sessions were held. These were sweeper training sessions – CellCheck Stage 2 training and Johne’s disease Veterinary Risk Assessment Management Planning (VRAMP). The VRAMP training was held in Gurteen Agricultural College, Roscrea in October while the CellCheck training was held on the 23 rd of November.

Stuart Childs, Teagasc presenting farm details of Parkduv Farm owned by Kevin and Bernadette Downing, one of the host farmers for the CellCheck on-farm events.

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Events and Media

CalfCare Events AHI, in conjunction with Teagasc are working with 10 dairy processors to deliver 13 on-farm CalfCare events around the country in January. The title of the events is ‘Calf rearing – steps to success for improved calf health’. The four topics being covered are; Rotavirus, Crypto and Coccidiosis; Options for calf accommodation; Johne’s disease – key management decisions for improved calf health; Best practice and guidelines on calf welfare.

Representatives from AHI, Teagasc and the Dairy Coops attending the launch of the CalfCare events on the Gowing Family Farm, Portlaoise

DATE

ON-FARM VENUE COMMENCING AT 11 am

8 th January 10 th January 14 th January 15 th January 16 th January 17 th January 18 th January 21 st January 22 nd January 23 rd January 24 th January 25 th January

Sean Kearney, Brackbawn, Kilbehenny, Mitchelstown, Co. Cork P67 RT99 Denis & Barry O’Mahony, Shanakill Kilbrittain, Co. Cork P72 NX37 Joe & Margo Hennessy, Knockeevan, Clerihan, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary E91 DX73 Tommy Ormond, Whitefields, Loughmore, Templemore, Co. Tipperary E41 TD52 Andrew & Bernadette Killeen, Newtown Kilkee, Co. Clare V15 FH67 John & Elizabeth Kelleher, Deshure, Terelton, Macroom, Co. Cork P12 FW65 Thomas Egan, Ballykeeffe, Cuffesgrange, Kilkenny R95 XP08

Teagasc Research Farm, Solohead, Co. Tipperary E34 PF58

Cathal Moran, Curraghlane, Sheoughvosteen, Borris, Carlow R95 NY89

John Flattery, Kilmucklin, Clara, Co. Offaly R35 PF24

Gerard McNally, Lattyloo, Cootehill, Co. Cavan H16 AP COMMENCE AT 100am94

David Lowry, Ballindrait, Lifford, Co. Donegal F93 KX07

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Focus on Technical Working Group Members

Name | Catherine McAloon Profession | Assistant Professor, UCD TWG Membership | CellCheck and CalfCare

Catherine McAloon qualified in 2011 from UCD and worked in a mixed practice in Ireland for 3 years before returning to UCD to undertake a residency programme in the Herd Health Department of the School of Veterinary Medicine. In 2017, Catherine successfully passed her European Board examinations and is a European Specialist in Bovine Health Management. She is also a RCVS recognised specialist in cattle health and production. Catherine currently is working as an Assistant Professor in the Herd Health and Animal Husbandry section of UCD.

Name | Dr Mark Robinson Profession | Senior Lecturer in Parasitology, Queens University, Belfast TWG Membership | Parasite Control

Mark Robinson is a Senior Lecturer in Parasitology at Queens University Belfast. He received a BSc (Hons) in Zoology and a PhD in Molecular Parasitology fromQueens University Belfast prior to taking up research fellowship positions at the University of Aberdeen and the University of Technology, Sydney. His research focuses on how parasitic flatworms (liver fluke and rumen fluke) interact with their hosts. The ultimate goal of this research is the discovery of new ways to protect animals from parasite infections or to improve diagnosis. Mark is current secretary of the Irish Society for Parasitology.

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Programme Update CellCheck

CellCheck AnimalHealthIreland.ie

Finola McCoy, Programme Manager

T he key focus of quarter four of 2018 was on building awareness and education on drying off cows, and in particular developing selective dry cow strategies. A series of 13 on-farm events, were delivered around the country by AHI and Teagasc, in partnership with the local co-ops. Feedback from these events was very positive, with good interaction from attending farmers. These practical awareness and information events focused on improving the outcomes from drying off and the dry period, as well as building the awareness of responsible antibiotic use at drying off. Attendance at some events was disappointing, highlighting the need for continued focus on these topics, and for all industry stakeholders to deliver consistent and clear signals in support of these key messages. The TWG completed a review of the latest science and research around developing selective dry cow strategies, and published updated recommendations to support drying-off decisions. This TWG update was an important part of a series of training events for veterinary practitioners, funded by the Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH) programme. Approximately 120 vets attended 8 TASAH training events to prepare and upskill to work with their clients to develop appropriate dry cow strategies, through the TASAH-funded Dry Cow Consult. The TASAH-funded Dry Cow Consult was launched at the start of November, with registration open online and by post until November 30 th . Despite the limited lead-in and preparation time, response to the service was very positive. Approximately 40 herds around the country that registered for the service successfully met all the eligibility criteria and participated in a Dry Cow Consult with their chosen veterinary practitioner. During the consults, milk recording results and farm records were reviewed, as well as current practices when drying off cows, to help develop and plan appropriate dry cow strategies. In a supported and structured way, most farms were able to identify a cohort of cows that were considered suitable for receiving an internal teat sealant only at drying off.

The TASAH-funded Dry Cow Consult was launched at the start of November, with registration open online and by post until November 30 th . Despite the limited lead-in and preparation time,

response to the service was very positive.

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CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards

Selection of photos from the CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards ceremony.

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Programme Update CellCheck

In response to industry demand, a Stage 2 Service Provider training day was held, to provider service providers with the skills, networks and resources required to deliver CellCheck Farmer Workshop as part of a 4-person delivery team. With the collation of the national bulk tank SCC data for 2017 by DAFM, the winners of the CellCheck Milking For Quality Awards were announced. Now in its fifth year, all winners had an SCC <72,000 cells/mL, which has reduced from <103,000 cells/mL in the first year of the awards. This is a phenomenal achievement, and one of which all award winners should be very proud, with a number receiving an award plaque for several years in a row. This year also saw the introduction of two new discussion group categories in the awards: ‘Best Group SCC’ and ‘Most Improved Group’. Collation of the bulk tank SCC data from the second 4 months of 2018 (May-August) has been completed, and is currently being analysed before being reported back to the relevant industry bodies. While in the southern hemisphere in November participating in a NZ agricultural industry conference, the AHI chairman Mike Magan travelled to Melbourne to meet with the CEO and Chairman of Dairy Australia, Dr David Nation and Jeff Odgers. Collaboration with Dairy Australia was instrumental in the establishment and early development of the CellCheck programme, with the sharing of expertise, experiences and resources. The partnership with Dairy Australia continues to be very positive. Mike presented Jeff with a plaque, styled on the CellCheck Milking For Quality award plaques, to acknowledge the support and contribution from Dairy Australia over the years.

Mike Magan presenting a replica CellCheck Milking For Quality plaque to Jeff Odgers.

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Programme Update BVD

AnimalHealthIreland.ie BVDFree

Dr Maria Guelbenzu, Programme Manager

Results By mid-December 2018, 2.3 million calves had been registered. Results were available for 98.8% of these calves. The prevalence of PI births in 2018 continues to decline, with only 0.06% of calves tested in the year being found to be persistently infected (PI) with BVDV (as compared to 0.10% in 2017, Figure 1), with these being located in 1.07% of 83,000 breeding herds (compared to 2.02% in 2017, Figure 2), generating an overall saving to farmers in 2018 in excess of €85 million. This represents a decrease in PI prevalence of 40% from that seen in 2017, and is a reduction of more than eleven-fold when compared to the prevalence at the start of the compulsory phase of the programme in 2013, when 0.66% of the calves born were PI. Updated programme results are available on a weekly basis at click here .

0.66

% PI ANIMALS

0.46

0.33

0.16

2017 2018 0.10 0.06

Figure 1. Animal-level prevalence of PI calves born during each year of the programme.

2013

2014

2015

2016

11.3

% PI HERDS

7.6

5.9

3.2

2018 2017 2.0 1.07

Figure 2. Prevalence of herds with PI calves born during each year of the programme.

2013

2014

2015

2016

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Programme Update BVD

Programme enhancements put in place over the last few years have had a significant impact on the prompt removal of PI calves. These include increased levels of financial support for removal of PIs within a reduced period of time, the automation of the imposition of restrictions of herds retaining PI calves for more than five weeks after the date of their first test and mandatory herd investigations within three months of the disclosing result (funded through the Rural Development Plan under the Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health [TASAH]). These measures, in combination with a decreasing overall prevalence, helped to achieve the lowest numbers of PIs alive recorded in the programme to date. At the end of Q4 2018 (31 th December), there were only 15 PIs still alive. As seen in Figure 3, at the end of December 2018 there no PIs alive in counties Donegal, Monaghan, Louth, Dublin, Wicklow, Clare, Galway, Sligo and Roscommon. This corresponds to a reduction of 70% when compared to the 95 PIs alive at the same point last year. Good progress has also been made in reducing the number of PIs retained. Only 3 herds were actually retaining PIs at the end of Q4 (no registered date of death within 5 weeks of the date of initial test), compared to 18 herds at the same point in 2017. While this clearly demonstrates good progress, it is critical that the incidence of retention is reduced to zero with all calves being tested as soon as possible after birth and PIs removed as rapidly as possible thereafter.

PIs alive December 31 st 2018

As seen in Figure 3, at the end of December 2018 there no PIs alive at that time in Counties Donegal, Monaghan, Louth, Dublin, Wicklow, Clare, Galway, Sligo and Roscommon. This corresponds to a reduction of 70% when compared to the 95 PIs alive at the same point last year.

Figure 3. Map showing distribution of live PI animals at the end of December 2018. Each hexagon represents an area of approximately 10km 2

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Programme Update BVD

Negative herd status (NHS) Herds qualify for negative herd status (NHS) by meeting the following requirements: 1. existence of a negative BVD status for every animal currently in the herd (on the basis of either ‘direct’ or ‘indirect’ results); 2. absence of any animal(s) deemed to be persistently infected with BVD virus from the herd in the 12 months preceding the acquisition of NHS. By the end of Q4 2018, over 90.5% of herds had acquired NHS, with a further 7,111 only being ineligible due to the presence of a small number of untested animals. While an important programme milestone for any herd, NHS also brings with it an economic benefit, with a number of laboratories that use the RTPCR test method offering testing at reduced costs to herds with NHS click here . The status of almost all animals in the 83,000breeding herds in Ireland is now known, with the main exception being a decreasing number of animals born before the start of the compulsory programme in 2013 that have neither been tested nor produced a calf. At the end of Q3 the number of these animals was approximately 8,000. At the end of Q4, the number has reduced to 6,400. The majority of these animals are in beef herds, and the majority are male. These animals are not required to be tested under the legislation and may currently be sold untested. It is important that these animals are tested in the coming months. During the summer of 2018 AHI contacted herds containing only pre-2013-born animals by SMS to encourage their testing. The number of animals born since January 2013 that do not have a valid test result and are therefore not compliant with the requirements of the legislation has also reduced from 21,150 at the end of Q3 to approximately 14,400. The majority of these have never been tested, while a small number have had an initial empty result and not been retested. Most of these animals are 2018-born (88%), with smaller numbers from preceding years. During the last few months DAFM has issued letters to these herds, informing them of the need to test these animals.

By the end of Q4 2018, over 90.5% of herds had acquired NHS, with a further 7,111 only being ineligible due to the presence of a small number of untested animals. While an important programme milestone for any herd, NHS also brings with it an laboratories that use the RTPCR test method offering testing at reduced costs to herds with NHS economic benefit, with a number of

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Programme Update BVD

Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH) Since 2017 all herds with positive results are required to undergo an RDP-funded TASAH herd investigation by a trained veterinary practitioner within 3 months of the initial positive result. These investigations seek to review herd biosecurity, identify a plausible source or sources of infection, ensure that the herd is left free from BVDV and agree farm-specific measures to prevent its re-introduction. Investigations have now been completed for 688 herds with positive results in 2018 (86% of positive herds). A small number have not been completed within the 3 months allocated and these are now being contacted to progress the investigations. Key actions for herdowners • The small number of farmers with PIs still present in their herds should remove these as quickly as possible to reduce the possibility of further PI calves being born next season. • Farmers who have requested a herd investigation that has not yet been completed should contact their nomi- nated practitioner to progress this. • Farmers who have not had a PI present in their herd in the past 12 months but have not yet been notified that they have acquired NHS should identify and test any animals whose status is not known. • All farmers should review biosecurity to avoid accidental reintroduction of infection. More generally, herdowners are encouraged to discuss biosecurity, including any potential changes to their vaccination policy, with their own veterinary practitioner. Further details on biosecurity, including quarantine, are available on the Animal Health Ireland website click here . Key Messages for 2019

Theenhancedprogrammemeasures introduced for2018havedelivered furtherprogress in thenational BVDeradicationprogramme,with significant improvementsbeingmade in reducingboth theprevalenceand retentionofpersistently infected (PI) calves. - €85million saving to farmers in2018alone. - 90%ofbreedingherdshaveattainednegativeherd status (NHS). - Eradicationachievableby2020. - NumberofPIsaliveatendof2018historically low. - Many countieswithperiods in2018duringwhichnoPIswerealive. The keypoints for theBVDprogramme in2019, includemeasures required to furtheraccelerateprogress towardseradication,witha focusonprompt testingof calves, removalofPIs,preventionofonward spread frompositiveherdsand testingofanimalsofunknown status. ANIMAL HEALTH IRELAND Contributing to aprofitable and sustainable farming and agri-food sector through improved animalhealth BVD ERADICATION - KEY MESSAGES FOR 2019

During Q4, the BVDIG, taking account of advice from the Technical Working Group, have adopted a number of recommendations to further accelerate progress toward eradication. These focus on prompt testing of calves, prompt removal of PIs, prevention of onward spread from positive herds and testing of animals of unknown status. Coupled with revisions to the levels of financial supports for the prompt removal of PI calves, the times for which these are available are reduced, with herd restrictions being applied after three weeks in 2019, rather than five weeks. Details of these changes are included in the Key Messages for 2019, which are now available on the AHI website. These will be distributed with tag deliveries in the coming weeks click here .

Figure2. DistributionofPIsborn in2018.

Figure1. DistributionofPIsborn in2013.

NATIONALBVD ERADICATIONPROGRAMME AnimalHealth Ireland, 4-5 The Archways, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim,N41WN27

BVD IMPLEMENTATIONGROUP: AnimalHealth Ireland | DepartmentofAgriculture,Foodand theMarine | Glanbia | IrishCattleBreedingFederation | IrishCo-OperativeSociety | IrishCreameryMilkSuppliersAssociation | IrishFarmers’Association | IrishHolsteinFriesianAssociation | PedigreeCattleBreedersCouncilof Ireland | Teagasc | Veterinary Ireland

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Programme Update Johne’s Disease

Johne's Control AnimalHealthIreland.ie

Lorna Citer, Programme Manager

P hase Two of the IJCP has been finalised, with this element of the programme commencing on the 1 st of January 2019. It will be open to all dairy farmers across the country, based on voluntary participation. Farmers currently registered in Phase One of the programme will automatically have their registrations carried forward to Phase Two. Phase Two of the IJCP has the support of all stakeholders and financial support for a number of activities is being provided by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM), individual milk processors and farmers with a commitment fromDAFMandmilk processors to maintain financial supports over a four year period. This funding will assist herdowners to carry out whole herd testing, Veterinary Risk Assessment and Management Plans (VRAMP) and ancillary testing where required. In addition, DAFM is to provide a national screening component (case finding) through Bulk Milk Tank testing of all herds. Following registration in Phase Two of the IJCP, herds will follow either a test-negative or test-positive pathway depending on whole herd test results. All herds are to complete an annual herd test (one blood or one milk sample per eligible animal). After the completion of annual VRAMPs in the first three years and four rounds of negative whole herd testing, herds on the test-negative pathway will progress to a maintenance programme in which the frequency and/or extent of VRAMPs and whole herd tests will be reduced. Herds on the test-positive pathway will have access to additional veterinary advice provided through the Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH), funded by DAFM and the European Union through the Rural Development Programme. DAFM will also provide the funding to meet the costs of VRAMPs and ancillary testing (where required).

Phase Two of the IJCP has the support of all stakeholders and financial support for a number of activities is being provided by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM), individual milk processors and farmers with a commitment from DAFM and milk processors to maintain financial supports over a four year period.

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Programme Update Johne’s Disease

Milk processors will provide financial support towards whole herd testing for three years (test-negative pathway) and four years for herds following a test-positive pathway at agreed levels. An objective measure of the progress that each registered herd is making in controlling Johne’s disease will be generated and made available individually for participing farmers through the ICBF, providing assurance for both Irish farmers and international markets. The online registration portal and associated documentation is available from the website click here . Registrations in Phase One of the IJCP have closed at the start of December. By end of December 2018, 937 herds had registered in Phase One of the IJCP, of which 57% (551) had their whole herd test results uploaded, and 672 herds had completed a VRAMP. It should be noted that a number of herds which have completed whole herd testing received a derogation for a VRAMP during Phase One of the programme based on previous activities during the pilot programme. WHT test results continue to be uploaded and laboratories have until the 31st of January to finalise outstanding results. Regular communications with both herd owners and vets are continuing to ensure the maximum number of herdowners have completed the programme requirements, by the end of 2018. A series of TASAH training workshops for Approved Veterinary Practitioners (AVPs) was held in November prior to the launch of the TASAH initiative in January 2019. 128 AVPs attended the eight workshops which were held throughout Ireland. A User Guide to the Johne’s disease Dashboard on ICBF has been completed and is now available to all AVPs through the Service Provider Portal. This document has also been used as a resource during the recent TASAH training workshops. The JD Bulletin continues to be published monthly and provides information on current issues which have been raised by herdowners and stakeholders.

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Programme Update: IBR

AnimalHealthIreland.ie IBRFree

Dr Maria Guelbenzu, Programme Manager

M ost of the work in the last quarter has concentrated on finalising the Pilot IBR Programme and preparing information for the modelling work that is going to be carried out around the options for a national IBR programme. IBR Pilot Programme Update A pilot IBR eradication programme was developed by the IBR Technical Working Group (TWG) for herds participating in Phase Three of the Teagasc/Irish Farmers journal BETTER Farm Beef Programme. Agroupofprivateveterinarypractitioners (PVPs)hasbeentrained inthe application of an on-farm veterinary risk assessment andmanagement plan (VIBRAMP). The VIBRAMP consists of a questionnaire that will capture details of the farm structure, animal movements, biosecurity and vaccination history, with the vet and herd owner agreeing up to three changes to improve biosecurity. In addition to the VIRAMP, the pilot includes the partial sampling of the herd for IBR and the formulation of biosecurity recommendations for those farms. Herds are being tested by applying a herd ‘snap shot’ which requires the sampling of 30 randomly selected animals over 9 months-old that are used or intended for breeding and testing the samples at DAFM’s Blood Testing Laboratory in Cork with an IBR gE (marker) ELISA. This sampling allows a statistically-based estimation of the proportion of IBR-positive animals in the herd and the formulation of the most appropriate recommendations to the farm in terms of IBR-control. By the end of Q4, all of the herd had been sampled and most had the VIBRAMP completed. Results from this testing will be used to evaluate the herd status, to identify risk factors associated with the presence of infection, to identify common biosecurity risks and inform the decision on further testing and vaccination. For example, testing of all animals in herds with a negative snap shot result would be justified,

Herds are being tested by applying a herd ‘snap shot’ which requires the sampling of 30 randomly selected animals over 9 months-old that are used or intended for breeding and testing the samples at DAFM’s Blood Testing Laboratory in Cork with an IBR gE (marker) ELISA.

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Programme Update: IBR

allowing the identification and removal of any carrier animals and enabling the herd to move rapidly to freedom. The information generated will also be used by the IBR TWG to inform options for an IBR eradication programme for Ireland. Modelling work A DAFM-funded PhD student, working with the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (Germany) visited Ireland at the start of December 2018. This team previously developed a national BVD model which continues to inform the BVD eradication programme. This visit provided an update to the TWG and, separately to DAFM, on progress to date. In addition, detailed discussions took place to assist with further development of the model. It is intended that the model will support the development of a sustainable national IBR programme by allowing testing of different strategies and their effects on the success, duration and cost of such a programme. This in turn will provide options for a consultation on progressing to a national programme. Communications Results for the IBR Pilot Programme to-date were presented at the Teagasc National Beef Conference that took place on the 30th October in Tullamore (https://www.teagasc.ie/news--events/national-events/events/national- beef-conference.php). In addition, a workshop on IBR with a practical session that was delivered with real anonymised data from the IBR Pilot programme was delivered at the Cattle Association of Veterinary Ireland (CAVI) conference on the 12th October in Mullingar.

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ANIMAL HEALTH IRELAND Contributing to a profitable and sustainable farming and agri-food sector through improved animal health Stakeholders NEWSLETTER

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