14 May 2009

Facial eczema monitoring programme over

6:00 am on 14 May 2009

This season's facial eczema monitoring programme is over despite high spore counts continuing to be recorded in some areas.

Facial eczema breaks out each summer mainly in the North Island, and can result in skin and liver damage in livestock, and in some cases death can occur.

Despite the cooler weather, AsureQuality says some properties in parts of Waikato and the far north are still at risk and farmers there should continue to watch spore counts closely.

While some herds were severely affected this season, the agency says effect of facial eczema was generally spasmodic.

Low levels of liver damage in sheep as a result of facial eczema were noted at processing plants in Hawke's Bay and Auckland.

The exception was a plant at Waitotara which reported some lamb lines as having between 70% - 90% of livers condemned because of the disease.