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Falls Creek, Australia

Morgan K.,University of Liverpool | Cameron A.,AusVet Animal Health Services | Gustafson L.,U.S. Department of Agriculture
Journal of Applied Aquaculture

This aim of this article is to enable the reader to implement a surveillance system. System is defined as “a set of interacting and interdependent components that have a function, i.e., inputs and outputs” and surveillance as “the ongoing systematic collection and analysis of data and the provision of information that leads to action being taken to prevent and control disease.” It includes practical exercises as well as theoretical information to assist in getting surveillance from the computer to the farm. It recognizes that management theory and information technology are as important as epidemiology in implementing surveillance. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source

East I.J.,Khan Research Laboratories | Davis J.,Khan Research Laboratories | Sergeant E.S.G.,AusVet Animal Health Services | Garner M.G.,Khan Research Laboratories
Australian Veterinary Journal

Objective: To assess management practices and movement patterns that could influence the establishment and spread of exotic animal diseases (EAD) in pigs in Australia. Methods: A literature review of published information and a telephone survey of 370 pig producers owning >10 pigs who were registered with the PigPass national vendor declaration scheme. Results: The movement and marketing patterns of Australian pig producers interviewed were divided into two groups based predominantly on the size of the herd. Major pig producers maintain closed herds, use artificial insemination and market direct to abattoirs. Smaller producers continue to purchase from saleyards and market to other farms, abattoirs and through saleyards in an apparently opportunistic fashion. The role of saleyards in the Australian pig industry continues to decline, with 92% of all pigs marketed directly from farm to abattoir. Conclusions: This survey described movement patterns that will assist in modelling the potential spread of EAD in the Australian pig industry. Continued movement towards vertical integration and closed herds in the Australian pig industry effectively divides the industry into a number of compartments that mitigate against the widespread dissemination of disease to farms adopting these practices. © 2014 Australian Veterinary Association. Source

Gordon R.,AusVet Animal Health Services | Bresolin-Schott N.,Plant Health Australia | East I.J.,GPO Box 858
Australian Veterinary Journal

Objective: To examine the nomadic movements of Australian beekeepers and determine their potential to assist the spread of pests and diseases. Methods: A questionnaire was mailed to all beekeepers in Australia who maintained >100 hives, requesting information on the location of their home base, locations used throughout the year and the crops that the bees fed on in each location. The information was analysed using network analysis software and a geographic information system. Results: Nomadic Australian beekeepers formed a connected network linking 288 locations from central Queensland to western Victoria. A second, smaller network included 42 locations in south-eastern South Australia. Almond orchards in Robinvale and Boundary Bend and lucerne seed production in Keith were locations of major hive congregations driven by the opportunity to provide paid pollination services. In the 3months after completion of almond pollination in August 2008, movement of hives occurred from Robinvale and Boundary Bend to 49 locations, ranging from south-east Queensland to south-west Victoria. Discussion: The movements identified in this study highlight the potential for rapid spread of disease or pests throughout the beekeeping industry should an incursion occur. © 2014 Australian Veterinary Association. Source

Output-based surveillance standards provide a mechanism to achieve harmonised and comparable surveillance (which meets a defined objective) while allowing flexible approaches that are adapted to the different populations under surveillance. When correctly implemented, they can result in lower cost and greater protection against disease spread. This paper presents examples of how risk-based sampling can improve the efficiency of surveillance, and describes the evolution of output-based surveillance standards for demonstration of freedom from disease in terms of three generations of approach: surveillance sensitivity, probability of freedom, and expected cost of error.These three approaches progressively capture more of the factors affecting the final outcome. The first two are relatively well accepted but the third is new and relates to the consequences of infection.There has been an increased recognition of the value of risk-based sampling for demonstration of freedom from disease over the last decades, but there has been some disagreement about practical definitions and implementation, in particular as to whether 'risk-based' implies probability of infection or probability and consequences. This paper argues that risk-based sampling should be based solely on the probability of infection of a unit within the population, while the consequences of infection should be used to set the target probability of freedom. This approach provides a quantitative framework for planning surveillance which is intuitively understandable. The best way to find disease, if it is present, is to focus on those units that are most likely to be infected. However, if the purpose of surveillance includes mitigating the risk of a disease outbreak, we want to ensure that that risk is smallest in those populations where the consequences of failure to detect are greatest. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. Source

Moore S.J.,Murdoch University | O'Dea M.A.,WA | Perkins N.,AusVet Animal Health Services | Barnes A.,Murdoch University | O'Hara A.J.,Murdoch University
Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation

The cause of death in 215 cattle on 20 long-haul live export voyages from Australia to the Middle East, Russia, and China was investigated between 2010 and 2012 using gross, histologic, and/or molecular pathology techniques. A quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) assay was used to detect nucleic acids from viruses and bacteria known to be associated with respiratory disease in cattle: Bovine coronavirus (Betacoronavirus 1), Bovine herpesvirus 1, Bovine viral diarrhea virus 1 and 2, Bovine respiratory syncytial virus, Bovine parainfluenza virus 3, Histophilus somni, Mycoplasma bovis, Mannheimia haemolytica, and Pasteurella multocida. The most commonly diagnosed cause of death was respiratory disease (107/180, 59.4%), followed by lameness (n = 22, 12.2%), ketosis (n = 12, 6.7%), septicemia (n = 11, 6.1%), and enteric disease (n = 10, 5.6%). Two thirds (130/195) of animals from which lung samples were collected had histologic changes and/or positive qRT-PCR results indicative of infectious lung disease: 93 out of 130 (72%) had evidence of bacterial infection, 4 (3%) had viral infection, and 29 (22%) had mixed bacterial and viral infections, and for 4 (3%) the causative organism could not be identified. Bovine coronavirus was detected in up to 13% of cattle tested, and this finding is likely to have important implications for the management and treatment of respiratory disease in live export cattle. Results from the current study indicate that although overall mortality during live export voyages is low, further research into risk factors for developing respiratory disease is required. © 2014 The Author(s). Source

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