Victorian Pig Health Monitoring Scheme
Un-recognised disease in the pig herd can be a major factor in poor herd performance.
Pig health monitoring is a technique that allows pig producers to identify a range of diseases that may be present in their herd. It involves the examination of the carcasses and organs of slaughter pigs at the abattoir.
Following the inspection a detailed report is sent to the producer indicating what diseases were detected and how many pigs were affected.
Why have your pigs inspected?
- Inspections help you find out what disease are present in your herd and the possible cause of poor performers.
- Inspections allow you to monitor the success of disease reduction programs such as changes in antibiotic usage or the introduction of new management practices.
- Once you have established your herd's health status you can ensure that all new breeding stock that is purchased has equal or better health status to your herd.
- The inspection of slaughtered pigs at the abattoir may assist you in validating aspects of your QA program (such as legible branding of all stock).
What diseases are monitored?
At inspections the organs and carcase of slaughtered pigs are routinely examined for
- Dermatitis (mange)
- Liver lesions (roundworm)
- Proliferative enteritis (Lawsonia infection)
- Erysipelas (skin lesions only)
Inspections and processing
Inspection of carcasses during processing at abattoirs provides an improved understanding of endemic disease and demonstrated absence of exotic disease in the Victorian Pig Herd. The diseases routinely monitored are economically-significant and include pneumonia, arthritis, colitis and dermatitis. Pneumonia was the most commonly detected entity in the last 12 months, present in approximately 50% of herds.
Of interest was the increase in dermatitis over summer which was most likely a result of increased mosquito infestations on-farm as a result of the floods.
On request pigs can also be examined for atrophic rhinitis and stomach ulcers. Sows can also be checked.
A detailed inspection report consisting of the current inspection results and the previous two years results are sent to you and your consultant vet if required. The report also allows you to compare your herd's results with other herds of similar size and health status.
How do you organise an inspection?
Inspections are routinely performed at Diamond Valley Pork, Australian Food Group, Benalla and Echuca abattoirs. Between 30 and 70 pigs should be inspected to gain an accurate estimate of disease levels. Smaller herds may need more than one consignment examined.
There is no cost to have a herd inspection.
To organise an inspection please contact
Patrick Daniel at:
Pig Health and Research Unit
Corner Midland Highway and Taylor Street
Epsom Victoria 3551
PO Box 3100
Bendigo Delivery Centre
Telephone: (03) 5430 4412
Fax: (03) 5430 4490