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Beef Healthcheck Results, Spring 2019

A report published this week by Animal Health Ireland (AHI) summarises post-mortem examinations carried out on thousands of cattle in Irish slaughterhouses.

The report, written by Dr Natascha Meunier of AHI, shows that levels of liver fluke, liver abscesses and pneumonia were at similar levels compared to previous years.

Live fluke were observed in 3.06% of livers examined, and liver damage was observed in 15.6% of livers. There was a large degree of variation between counties in the proportion of cattle which were affected. Well over 5% of cattle submitted for slaughter from certain counties in the west and north had live liver fluke detected, whereas the proportion of cattle with live fluke detected was much lower in some Leinster counties.

The proportion of livers affected is substantial, given that weather conditions in the 2018 grazing season (reflected in DAFM’s liver fluke forecast for winter 2018/2019) were unfavourable for liver fluke.  This report highlights the importance of avoiding complacency when addressing the threat of liver fluke; the variation in outcomes which can occur due to regional differences in weather patterns within Ireland; and the value of reporting slaughterhouse data to farmers in presenting them with timely and accurate information on which to base their management decisions.

The full AHI report can be found here:

Species: Bovine
3:34 PM on Thu, 18 April