Producers Reminded To Avoid Potential Problems With Pregnant Animals

AUSTRALIA - Cattle producers who intend to supply stock for breeder sales in January 2008 are reminded to avoid transporting late pregnant animals
calendar icon 29 May 2007
clock icon 1 minute read

Department of Agriculture and Food senior veterinary officer Michael Paton said that transport codes of practice stated that cows must not be transported once they were eight months pregnant.

"The January breeder sales are held at one of the hottest times of the year, so it is important to minimise stress on pregnant animals," Dr Paton said.

"In addition, there has been confusion regarding the calculation of the eight month cut-off point specified in the cattle transport code of practice.

"Counting back one month from the expected due date based on a nine calendar month pregnancy period is not sufficiently accurate, as each month is more than 28 days.

"The average gestation period for cattle is 280 days, and producers should avoid transporting mated heifers and cows after day 245."

Dr Paton said stock agents were very aware of the issue and were working with producers also.

"Cows intended for sale in the first week of the January sales should not have been joined before 15 May and those intended for the second sale week after the 22 May," he said.

"If producers have already commenced joining, it is advisable to consider arranging pregnancy testing to identify cows in more advanced pregnancy and to sell these earlier.

"Not complying with these requirements of transporting livestock may put producers and others involved at risk of prosecution."

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