; A new approach to a deadly risk | Conferences | AgRisk Library


Conference Name A new approach to a deadly risk

Phil Durst


Among the risks with which farmers have to deal, that of herd infection with Bovine Tuberculosis (bTB) is a real risk for dairy and beef cattle farmers in NE Michigan with major consequences. As a regulated disease with USDA, the requirements put on farmers have increased over almost 20 years of dealing with the disease. Even so, herds were still becoming infected from wild whitetail deer at a steady rate and perhaps more indicating, farmers were tired of even hearing about bTB. Seeking a new way to approach the problem, MSU Extension and Michigan Department of Agriculture personnel developed the Enhanced Wildlife Biosecurity Program. Now having been done with more than 50 farms, the success of the program is based on 5 components: 1. Individualized approach, 2. Involve farmers cooperatively, 3. Search together for practical responses, 4. Bring farmers together, and 5. Refer farmers to available resources. Farmers have overwhelmingly accepted this new approach and it has become the primary approach that Michigan is banking on to reduce the number of TB-infected herds.

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