‘Scrapie results’ now available for genotyped animals

Sheep breeders who have genotyped animals in 2019 now have access to the ‘scrapie type’ results for their animals. These results can be found on the Sheep Ireland website.

Breeders can access the results by going to their flock inventory, searching for the animal and clicking on the DNA tab.

The results published by Sheep Ireland are not department approved. However, they can act as a guideline for farmers, in order to find type-one animals before making breeding decisions.

Below is a table outlining the different genotype results.

Flocks can now order genotypes via their genomic ordering screen in order to verify the parentage of their lambs.

Once genotypes have been ordered, tissue sample tags should arrive in the post in five-working days.

The cost of each genotype has been subsidised from €24.50 to €10.00 for the first 1,000 samples ordered by LambPlus flocks since it was launched on May 1.

Since May, 1,150 genotypes have been ordered showing a strong demand by breeders.

What is it?

Scrapie is a slow progressive terminal brain disease of adult sheep. It is an infectious disease and is thought to be spread mainly at lambing time.

It is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE), similar to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle.

Clinical signs of scrapie are most common in sheep three to four years-of-age.

Typical clinical signs include:

  • Change in behaviour: Lagging behind the flock, nervousness and drooping of the ears;
  • Change in posture and movement: Head trembling and an inability to stand;
  • Skin irritation: Loss of wool;
  • Chronic weight loss.

Scrapie is a notifiable disease, which you are obliged to notify the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine of if a sheep is infected with the disease.