Sheep Health and Welfare
Sheep body lice (Bovicola ovis) are biting insects that cause affected animals to become itchy. Signs of lice infestation include rubbing, biting and scratching. Lice are a common problem in Victorian sheep flocks, but most importantly are controllable, eradicable and preventable. After this text, please create links to the following page:
Ovine Johnes disease
Ovine Johne's (pronounced 'yoh-nees') disease is an infectious fatal wasting disease of sheep. It is often abbreviated to OJD. OJD can have severe economic effects in sheep flocks if it is left uncontrolled. It is caused by a strain of the bacterium Mycobacterium paratuberculosis.
Footrot in sheep
Footrot is an infectious and contagious disease caused by the bacteria, Dichelobacter nodosus. This organism may also infect goats and occasionally cattle. Ovine (sheep) footrot has long been dreaded by sheep owners. It is a disease which causes severe economic loss, suffering due to lameness and disruption to normal farm operations.
Heavy rainfall and floods during the warm summer months can increase the risk of flystrike. Continual wetting of fleeces without drying, leads to skin damage and the release of extra protein which, in turn encourages bacterial overgrowth. It is a major sheep welfare problem and sheep owners must actively control flystrike.
Shelterbelts for Livestock Productivity
Shelterbelts have been used to protect stock from harsh weather conditions for hundreds of years. Shelterbelts provide a range of benefits for the protection of stock and improved productivity levels.
Assessing Sheep after a Bushfire
Sheep are common victims of bushfires in Victoria. After a fire, teams from the department are assigned properties to assess damage and animal and human welfare needs.
Find out more about Assessing sheep after a Bushfire.