Cattle movement limited by disease-fighting rules
By Josh St. Peters
New requirements for the movement of breeding cattle into and around South Dakota will take effect next month. The new policy created by the state's Animal Industry Board is intended for controlling the spread of trichomoniasis in beef cattle herds.
The order requires non-virgin bulls to be tested negative for the disease by 3 weekly tests prior to being imported, sold, loaned or leased in South Dakota. In addition, non-pregnant females which have had at least 1 calf in their lifetime will be restricted from sale for breeding purposes, according to a statement issued by South Dakota officials.
Trichomoniasis is a venereal disease of breeding cattle, which spreads through the breeding process and poses no risks or concerns for feeding or grazing cattle. The disease does not affect the health of the animal or the food supply. It can, however, seriously affect the reproductive efficiency of the breeding herd.
State officials report 35 newly affected herds in South Dakota in the past 6 months. Various cattle industry groups and producers had encouraged the Animal Industry Board to put control measures in place.
The rules take effect on June 1, 2005.