Over 600 herd owners partake in first phase of Johne’s control programme

638 herd owners have registered as part of phase one of the Irish Johne’s Control Programme, according to Animal Health Ireland (AHI). That’s 138 more than originally targeted under the initial phase of the programme.

A further 370 have expressed an interest in registering for phase two once it commences later this year.

So far in phase one, 86 herds have already completed a whole-herd test in the period of November 2017 to January 2018. An additional 271 herd owners have already commenced whole-herd testing using either milk or blood samples.

AHI has reminded farmers who are testing using milk samples to complete two tests – at least 90 days apart – and to avoid sampling milk during the first seven days of lactation and during peak.

Where milk samples are not available or possible, a single blood sample from those animals is required. In addition, all herd owners must have every animal (including bulls) tested that is over two years of age on the date of first sampling. They should also discuss the timing of testing with their approved veterinary practitioner.

The Irish Johne’s Control Programme focuses on:
  • Individual herd risk assessments undertaken by approved veterinary practitioners (AVP) and
    the development of customised management plans (VRAMPs);
  • Regular whole-herd screening tests using individual ELISA tests, contributing to the development of a herd assurance score for Johne’s disease;
  • There will be two different pathways for herds to build assurance – one for herds continuing to
    test negative and another for herds identified as infected.