INDUSTRY & Investment NSW is appealing to stock owners and transporters to be particularly vigilant against cattle ticks now to detect any infestations and report them.
"We are witnessing a rise in cattle tick infestations in Queensland this year and so we are urging people who bring livestock into NSW from Queensland to be on their guard,” said Paul Freeman, regional veterinary officer with Industry & Investment NSW (I&I NSW).
“The floods in Queensland are likely to contribute to a spread of ticks in that State, so it is vitally important that transporters meet the strict movement regulations when bringing cattle, horses or other livestock into NSW.
“Call I&I NSW on (07) 5536 4714 or (02) 6626 1201 to find out the requirements before moving cattle, horses or other livestock from Queensland into NSW.
“Producers who bring in Queensland cattle or horses are also advised to keep them in a holding paddock for a week or two as a biosecurity measure before allowing them access to the entire property.
“That way the animals can be monitored for ticks and if cattle ticks are found then the entire property is not quarantined – just the holding paddock.”
Mr Freeman said cattle ticks were the most serious external parasite of cattle in Australia. They can attach to cattle, horses and other livestock and transmit tick fever, a potentially fatal disease of cattle.
They are also a notifiable disease in NSW which means stockowners are required by law to inform the authorities of any findings on their stock.
Late summer and autumn is the peak period for cattle tick activity on the north coast so it is important for stockowners to be checking their livestock for ticks now.
"If we are able to get on top of an infestation early, the ticks are easier to eradicate from the affected property and the risk of ticks multiplying and spreading to other properties is greatly reduced."
Mr Freeman said there had been seven new cattle tick infestations in NSW so far this season.
“This is a low number by comparison with previous years and we’d like to keep it that way. “Last season there were 101 NSW properties found infested with cattle ticks and most of them are still undergoing treatment.”
Mr Freeman said some cattle tick strains in Queensland are becoming resistant to chemical controls.
"The key message for NSW stockowners is to meet the requirements when moving stock from Queensland, and to monitor stock in NSW for cattle ticks and report any findings.
"The earlier we get onto a tick infestation, the less chemical we are likely to use and that lowers the risk of resistance building in the tick population, and is better for the environment."
For information about the requirements when moving livestock from Queensland into NSW contact I&I NSW on
(02) 6626 1201 or (07) 5536 4714, or the Qld DPI Call Centre (07) 3404 6999. Industry & Investment NSW also has tick identification brochures available and staff at any office of I&I NSW or the Livestock Health and Pest Authority can assist with tick identification.
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