Veterinarian Rob Bonanno is excited at the prospect of going out to fewer cases of calves ill and dying of scours.CATHY WALKER February 27, 2013 4:20am
Last week Dr Bonanno said a long-awaited product to vaccinate pregnant cows to protect their calves against rotavirus and coronavirus had been eagerly snapped up by farmers as soon as it hit his Shepparton Veterinary Clinic shelves.
‘‘It’s taken years and years and finally we’ve got it,’’ Dr Bonanno said, brandishing the lone bottle of Rotavec Corona left in his office since farmers were notified it had arrived.
In terms of newborn calf management, the vaccine, manufactured by Coopers Animal Health, is the best thing since sliced bread.
‘‘Rotavirus is the disease that I diagnose most often as causing calf scours (and death) and until this week, there was no vaccine for it.’’
Dr Bonanno said rates of calf scours and subsequent death was ‘‘disappointingly high’’.
‘‘Anything that can bring that figure down is a great thing.’’
He said it was important to get the message out now because the first time to inject cows was 10 to 12 weeks before they calved, and then four to six weeks later, which meant autumn calvers needed to be treated soon.
Calves will gain the benefit of the rotavirus protection only after drinking the colostrum, which is the cow’s first milk, and Dr Bonanno said the importance of ensuring the calf received as much as four litres in its first hours of life could not be understated.
‘‘I tell clients the adage is ‘assume none from mum’ and give the calves stored colostrum.
‘‘That way you won’t die wondering, and hopefully the calves won’t either.’’
The new drug costs a little more than $6 a dose and the treatment is 2
It’s cheap insurance against what Dr Bonanno describes as needless deaths in calves.
‘‘We know for sure there is roto on at least 90 per cent of dairy farms,’’ he said.
Thanks to other scientific advances, the causes of calf scours — rotavirus, coronavirus, E.coli K99, salmonella and cryptosporidia — can now be tested for on-farm and an on-site diagnosis given for most.
Community support needed for drug and alcohol treatment centre near Numurkah.
Yarrawonga/Mulwala's largest ever professional golf event, the Shepparton BMW Senior Victorian Open, got underway today with 124 players hitting off from 8am to 1pm on Yarrawonga's Black Bull Golf Course at Silverwoods.
Tatura’s rainfall for the last three months of 2015, 116.6mm, was marginally down on the long-term average for the same period, 120.8mm.
JON Lam’s exhibition Heart to Art will open at Alton Gallery on Friday
THE second annual Christmas town party in Lockington did not quite attract the crowd organisers were hoping for, but it failed to dampen their spirit.
Special supplement in this weeks edition
For Tocumwal’s Lynda Snowden, working the land hasn’t stopped her from falling in love with the majestic surrounds of her day to day life.
TOOLLEEN Recreation Reserve Committee of Management presented three awards on Australia Day in front of 80 local residents.
The cuteness level at Maryanne Ryan’s place is overflowing the bucket, with the arrival of baby Dougal the donkey.
Deniliquin doctor Marion Magee says she is disgusted with the treatment of local nurses.
Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has been criticised by two Victorian MPs for suggesting the Federal Government should stop spending money on the $2 billion irrigation modernisation program until problems are sorted out.
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