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  • Studies focus on SARS-CoV-2 transmission in domestic cats, pigs

    Studies focus on SARS-CoV-2 transmission in domestic cats, pigs

    Two recently published studies from Kansas State University researchers and collaborators have led to two important findings related to the COVID-19 pandemic: Domestic cats can be asymptomatic carriers of SARS-CoV-2, but pigs are unlikely to be significant carriers of the virus. SARS-CoV-2 is the...
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  • Smart vaccine scheme quick to curb rabies threat in African cities

    Smart vaccine scheme quick to curb rabies threat in African cities

    More people could be protected from life-threatening rabies thanks to an agile approach to dog vaccination using smart phone technology to spot areas of low vaccination coverage in real time. Vets used a smart phone app to help them halve the time it takes to complete dog vaccination programmes i...
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  • Reducing transmission risk of livestock disease

    Reducing transmission risk of livestock disease

    The risk of transmitting the livestock virus PPRV, which threatens 80 percent of the world’s sheep and goats, increases with certain husbandry practices but not herd size. A new study, led by researchers at Penn State, investigated how transmission of PPRV might change at different scales a...
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  • OIE’s Global Burden of Animal Disease (GBAD) research programme secures more funding

    OIE’s Global Burden of Animal Disease (GBAD) research programme secures more funding

    Animal health researchers from the GBADs programme have secured $7 million in funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the UK’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office to explore and measure animal health burdens and their impacts on human lives and economies. The inform...
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  • Next Few Months Critical to Spring Fertility

    Next Few Months Critical to Spring Fertility

    Getting management of the suckler cow right in the January to April period will be critical in determining the success of the 2021 breeding season. Most Spring calving suckler cows are either just freshly calved or will calve in the next 8-12 weeks. Aidan Murray Beef Specialist has all the advice...
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  • Meet Cosmo, a bull calf designed to produce more male offspring

    Meet Cosmo, a bull calf designed to produce more male offspring

    Using the genome-editing technology CRISPR, researchers can make targeted cuts to the genome or insert useful genes, which is called a gene knock-in. In this case, scientists successfully inserted or knocked-in the cattle SRY gene, the gene that is responsible for initiating male development, int...
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  • Livestock’s Role In a Change Climate

    Livestock’s Role In a Change Climate

    Edward Bork’s research surrounding how livestock grazing affects soil carbon has made him a believer in the beneficial role cattle can potentially play in a changing climate. “Because their grazing contributes to the concentration of carbon in the soil – a helpful process – livestock can be a too...
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  • How to achieve optimum feed performance in a volatile market

    How to achieve optimum feed performance in a volatile market

    During the production cycle of a broiler, many factors influence a bird’s ability to achieve the full metabolisable energy (ME) potential of the feed Changes in diet and environment, as well as its genetics, can play a role. However, poultry producers’ main challenge is the variance in feed diges...
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  • Eating fly larvae can improve broilers welfare by facilitating natural behaviour

    Eating fly larvae can improve broilers welfare by facilitating natural behaviour

    Research presented by Wageningen University & Research (WUR) has shown that if broilers have to forage and peck the larvae, they move more, which improves their welfare During the research, live black soldier fly larvae were offered in different quantities and at different times during the da...
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  • Daylight study reveals how animals adapt between seasons

    Daylight study reveals how animals adapt between seasons

    Scientists have discovered how a biological switch helps animals make the seasonal changes crucial for survival, such as growing a warm winter coat and adjusting body temperatures. The findings reveal how the brain responds to short and long days to allow animals to adapt to changing conditions a...
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  • Cobb broiler breeder management guide helps customers optimise flock performance

    Cobb broiler breeder management guide helps customers optimise flock performance

    The new Cobb broiler breeder management guide includes expanded, updated and newly added technical expertise in broiler breeder production management to help customers succeed The company’s latest recommendations in the influential handbook are intended to help support more yield, better feed co...
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  • Cattle Lice Control

    Cattle Lice Control

    Hair loss on your cattle is a good indication they have a lice problem. The bites cause itching and irritation, so cattle rub, lick, and chew on themselves. This can cause damage to fence posts and other items they rub on for relief.  Lice also affect performance.  When the cattle are rubbing and...
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  • Young poultry farmer thrives despite setbacks

    Young poultry farmer thrives despite setbacks

    Asiphe Pentu runs a poultry farming operation from his home in Beshwana village in Mount Ayliff near Kokstad, in the Eastern Cape. One of six siblings, Pentu started his business, Khawulela Poultry Farming, in 2014, when he was just 17 and still in Grade 9, due to poverty faced by his family. His...
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  • Securing a market for your chickens

    Securing a market for your chickens

    Emerging poultry farmers should first find a market for the eggs or chickens they will be producing. However, these farmers shouldn’t try to compete with the large commercial producers for a place on the supermarket shelves. These big producers use specially selected chicken breeds to produce egg...
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  • Reduce antibiotic usage with these management tips

    Reduce antibiotic usage with these management tips

    Lowering antibiotic usage is easier said than done, as it usually coincides with a drop in farm margins. Dr John Patience, a professor in animal science specialising in pig nutrition at Iowa State University in the US, says this is primarily due to higher mortalities, but also because, as product...
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  • How to start a pig farming business

    How to start a pig farming business

    Kgadi Senyatsi, head of business development at the South African Pork Producers’ Organisation (SAPPO), says that farmers wanting to enter the pig industry should begin by conducting thorough research. “The pig industry is a complex, costly industry,” she warns. SAPPO recommends that a farmer sta...
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  • Harnessing the dual-purpose potential of Merino ewes

    Harnessing the dual-purpose potential of Merino ewes

    “Merinos are our pride and joy,” says Matthew Morgan (35), who returned home to farm near Tarkastad in the Eastern Cape with his late father, Jonathan, in 2009 before establishing his first pastures a year later. “With the pastures, I tried to maximise the potential of existing land so that I cou...
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  • Free-range duck farming in KZN Why less is more

    Free-range duck farming in KZN Why less is more

    Vanessa Collocott raises free-range Pekin ducks for meat on her 20ha smallholding, The Blue Orange Farm, in Curry’s Post, between Mooi River and Howick in KwaZulu-Natal. Her government-certified, free-range duck production enterprise started with only 60 day-old Pekin ducklings back in 2012. She ...
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  • Dealing with external parasites on chickens

    Dealing with external parasites on chickens

    External parasites (ectoparasites) that target poultry include lice, mites, ticks, fleas and flies. They live on or around the birds, and can disturb them, affect their growth and egg production, and spread disease. Lice Chickens are infested mainly with biting lice. These irritate the birds, slo...
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  • Chicken housing – get the basics right!

    Chicken housing – get the basics right!

      The purpose of poultry housing is to provide chickens with a healthy and comfortable environment that’s clean, dry and secure. The most affordable type is a naturally ventilated house scalable to any size.   This doesn’t make use of costly air-conditioning to control the climate insid...
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  • Caring for the sow and piglets at farrowing

    Caring for the sow and piglets at farrowing

    ‘Farrow’ originally meant ‘young pig’. In the early 1400s it came to refer to the birth process in pigs. The sow’s litter is also called a ‘farrow’. The most critical period in the life of a pig is from birth to weaning. On average, about two pigs per litter are lost during this time. Good manage...
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  • Breeding top-performing Dohne Merino on 95ha

    Breeding top-performing Dohne Merino on 95ha

    “Over five decades ago, my late father-in-law, Japie Patience, started farming 10 Ile de France sheep on a 95ha piece of rented commonage land in Saron, near Porterville. He also had a few calves that he bought from dairy farmers in the area,” recalls Therecia Patience. She took over the farm in ...
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  • Biosecurity your first line of defence against disease

    Biosecurity your first line of defence against disease

    Dr Fambies van Biljon, veterinarian at Sovereign Foods, talks to Glenneis Kriel about the crucial need to establish a well-run biosecurity programme at a poultry production facility. Why is biosecurity so important? Why can’t birds simply be medicated when they fall ill? The problem with poultry ...
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  • Still Serious Shortage of International Shipping Containers

    Still Serious Shortage of International Shipping Containers

    Since the second half of 2020, there has been a serious shortage of international shipping containers. A series of factors have affected the cost and price of international shipping. The price has changed the relationship between supply and demand, breaking the previous relatively stable process....
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