WRML.2016-02-26. WormFax etc

In this issue:


Animal Health Surveillance

Profarm courses

Tracking wild dogs

Bat super immunity

Alien plants and animals

Tail enders

WormFaxNSW – January issue is now on-line

You may need to refresh the page to see the update:  http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/aboutus/resources/periodicals/newsletters/wormfax
There are quite a few high worm egg counts – many dominated by barber’s pole worm – in sheep in various parts of the state, not just in the New England, although the WECs in general are higher there.
The rainfall that was somewhat above average in January in many areas has been followed by a largely dry February, but bear in mind that L3 infective worm  larvae on pasture are relatively resilient. Although hot dry weather hastens their demise, there will still be quite a few left out of January’s crop of worm larvae.   Keep up the WormTesting!  And, if and when you do need to drench, use an effective drench. Consider doing a DrenchCheck 10-14 days after that drench, especially if you are not certain it was effective. Assume nothing about effectiveness of drenches, new or old.

Animal Health Surveillance – NSW – October–December 2015 » Issue 2015/4


cover an hlth surviellance issued feb 2016

Profarm courses


Tracking wild dog movements online

“Wild dogs have been fitted with GPS collars for a new project in the State’s south.  You, and members of the public, can track the collared animals’ movements here via weekly updates over the next year.

This southern NSW initiative gives local stakeholders in wild dog management the chance to see data previously only available to researchers.  Information collected by each collar will be used to make practical improvements to management, informing the necessary scale of operations and directing efforts to where they will be most useful, by measuring activity ranges and identifying high risk incursion pathways over a 12 month period.

Riverina and Murray LLS engaged  staff from Biosecurity NSW to help design and implement the new applied research program  following success of previous Vertebrate Pest Research Unit projects in northern NSW. Staff from Forestry Corporation and National Parks are also collaborating in the project.

For more information about this research project, contact guy.ballard@dpi.nsw.gov.au and keep an eye on the web page! Another 22 dogs will be added to the program in coming months”.

(Source: NSW DPI’s internal blog (‘DPI Active’), 25/2/16)

Bat super immunity to lethal disease could help protect people

Black Headed Flying--banner...cropped

A CSIRO news release: http://www.csiro.au/en/News/News-releases/2016/Bat-super-immunity-to-lethal-disease-could-help-protect-people?featured=27F6622E2C954B819F5E36ECE881FA68

“23 February 2016

For the first time researchers have uncovered a unique ability in bats which allows them to carry but remain unaffected by lethal diseases.

Unlike humans, bats keep their immune systems switched on 24/7 and scientists believe this could hold the key to protecting people from deadly diseases like Ebola.

Bats are a natural host for more than 100 viruses, some of which are lethal to people, including Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), Ebola and Hendra virus, however, interestingly bats do not get sick or show signs of disease from these viruses.

Published today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) , this new research examines the genes and immune system of the Australian black flying fox, with surprising results.

“Whenever our body encounters a foreign organism, like bacteria or a virus, a complicated set of immune responses are set in motion, one of which is the defense mechanism known as innate immunity,” leading bat immunologist at CSIRO’s Australian Animal Health Laboratory Dr Michelle Baker said.

“We focused on the innate immunity of bats, in particular the role of interferons – which are integral for innate immune responses in mammals – to understand what’s special about how bats respond to invading viruses.

“Interestingly we have shown that bats only have three interferons which is only a fraction – about a quarter – of the number of interferons we find in people.

“This is surprising given bats have this unique ability to control viral infections that are lethal in people and yet they can do this with a lower number of interferons.”

The team also compared two type 1 interferons – alpha and beta.

The research showed that bats express a heightened innate immune response even when they were not infected with any detectable virus.

“Unlike people and mice, who activate their immune systems only in response to infection, the bats interferon-alpha is constantly ‘switched on’ acting as a 24/7 front line defence against diseases,” Dr Baker said.

“In other mammalian species, having the immune response constantly switched on is dangerous – for example it’s toxic to tissue and cells – whereas the bat immune system operates in harmony.”‘

Alien plants and animals drive native species to extinction


‘Accidentally or deliberately introduced species are the second most common threat associated with recent global extinctions of animals and plants .. ‘

‘Australia has the highest rate of recent mammalian extinctions in the wild’


‘Interesting:  https://thankyou.co/

Apple vs FBI

See here:


The ‘FBI has demanded in a court that Apple provide the technology to help the agency crack the passcode of a locked iPhone 5c used by one of the terrorists involved in the attack in San Bernardino.’

‘Apple CEO Tim Cook had said the government was asking for a backdoor to the iPhone. “The FBI may use different words to describe this tool, but make no mistake: Building a version of iOS that bypasses security in this way would undeniably create a backdoor,” he wrote.”

Apple, like any other, has its faults, but it seems they are damned if they do (comply with the FBI’s demand) and damned if they don’t.

The Macalope responds:


Changes to negative gearing – adverse effects on parallel parking








WRML: worm alert-Barbervax in S.NSW?-vet goes to the dogs-batteries -etc

Watch out for barber’s pole worm (and black scour worm)

Many parts of NSW got excellent rain in January, with some locations getting more than two times their monthly average.
This is good news for grass, so it’s good news for worms, not least barber’s pole worm (BPW, Haemonchus). But the ‘quiet achiever’, black scour worm (BSW, Trichostrongylus spp), could be building up as well and causing problems (ill thrift, scouring) in sheep.
Most importantly, producers need to keep on the ball by doing WormTesting over the next several weeks, especially if there is follow-up rain.  The ‘Honda’ test – getting mobs to have a run – using your bike or quad plus dogs – might also give early warning signs of looming issues with the bloodsucker, BPW.
The good rain in January will also make liver fluke happy so, don’t forget liver fluke if you have it.
When you come to drench, what will you use?   The first question to answer is not whether you use a long or short acting drench, or a drench from a particular family or a certain brand, or a drench in the right price range. (Whether cheap or pricey, the most expensive drench is the one that doesn’t work).
The first and most important question is: what is effective on my farm?
If you are not sure, i.e. you haven’t tested the drenches you use, a multi-active broad-spectrum combination or one of the new drenches (Zolvix or Startect) will generally be best bets, but get good local advice.   And take the opportunity to do a DrenchCheck, i.e. a worm egg count on the day of drenching and again 10 days later. It’s money well spent.


Barbervax in areas other than the ‘homes of Haemonchus‘?

The homes of Haemonchus -barber’s pole worm (BPW) – are summer rainfall areas such as NE NSW and SE Qld where haemonchosis (disease due to BPW) is regularly a significant issue on most farms, i.e., haemonchosis is endemic (in addition to Haemonchus being endemic).

From time to time, there can be significant issues with Haemonchus ‘down south’ in the non-seasonal or uniform rainfall areas of central and southern NSW. At these times, an oft-asked question from ‘the south’ is whether Barbervax is worthwhile in non-seasonal rainfall areas.

If used as directed, I am sure Barbervax will work a treat in those areas, but the question is whether it is economic to do so. Doubtless the answer might change as drench-resistant worms become even more prevalent in central and southern NSW, approaching the prevalence seen in such northern regions as the New England.

As to the question: see the links below, especially the WormBoss article written in August 2015.   This covers the question of economics.

By, the way, Barbervax is now registered for use in adult sheep as well as lambs.(See here ..  ‘editor’s note, December 2015—the vaccination is now registered for sheep of all ages’)

Links on WormBoss:


http://www.wormboss.com.au/news/articles/nonchemical-management/barbervaxa-vaccine-to-protect-against-barbers-pole-worm.php   (Aug 2015)      This article considers economics etc.


‘Just saw this: the Barbevax schedule calculator: http://barbervax.com.au/calculator.php

LLS vet joins Yukon sled dog race team

1 February 2016    Source: NSW DPI

Central Tableland Local Land Services district vet, Dr Alan Taylor flew to Alaska last weekend to take part in the 1,600 km international Yukon Quest sled dog race.

Alan will be the only Australian among 16 animal officials supporting the 11-day event, which is expected to attract 80 teams, each starting with 16 dogs and travelling from Alaska to Yukon.

The race will be a sharp contrast to the weather conditions Alan is accustomed to at his home in Molong and the type of work he is used to in the central tablelands.

In a recent interview with ABC News, Alan said he had packed a sleeping bag suitable for temperatures as low as minus 20 degrees Celcius and was prepared for temperatures as low as 40 degrees below zero.

While this is his first Yukon Quest, Alan has been involved in five previous Iditarod races – the event that follows on from the quest and had been described as “the last great race on earth”. While it’s the same distance, Alan said the Yukon Quest was “earlier, further north, and presumably colder”. Fortunately, he has a couple of days in Hawaii on the way back home to warm up again.

You can read the full ABC interview and see photos of Alan in earlier Iditarod races.

A.Word.A.Day   http://wordsmith.org/

with Anu Garg

‘If to err is human, human languages have ample proof of it. What we consider correct spelling or proper pronunciation or official meaning of a word today is sometimes an error that has taken root and become a part of language.

The word third was earlier thrid, helpmate was helpmeet, and syllabus was sittybus. Errors in printing, reading, hearing, or understanding gave the words new spellings, new pronunciations, or new meanings. Time is kind to imperfections. Just wait long enough and what was erroneous is now the standard.

In this week’s selection we feature five words that were shaped by errors.  …..’



Teacher arrested at Sydney International

Teacher Arrested At Sydney International

​Lawyers found guilty of murder

 ..murdering the English language.
This from a legal disclaimer on one of my favourite websites…(yep… WormBoss):
‘Future events cannot reliably be predicted accurately’.
I suppose it could have been worse, e.g. ‘In terms of future events in this space, they cannot reliably be predicted accurately going forward’

Other examples of crimes against English can commonly be found in marketing, corporate-speak, pollie-speak etc…