Disease prevention is much easier and less expensive than treating an outbreak, and the University of Maine has developed a template designed for sheep and goat producers in any region of the country to create a customized biosecurity plan for their farms. With funding from Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE), the plan was developed jointly by UMaine Extension Educator Richard Brzozowski and University of Maryland Extension Sheep and Goat Specialist Susan Schoenian.
The plan is an offshoot of a sheep foot health research project currently underway in the northeast. The link to write an individual biosecurity plan is www.sheepandgoat.com/biosecurity/.
Producers are encouraged to read and respond to a series of questions or statements. A customized document will be created at no charge as they work through the form. Each farm’s biosecurity plan will be saved at a secure location and available to producers via a specific password the producer creates. Producers also can save and print their own plans and may update, revise or delete their plan at any time. All information will be confidential.
“The hope is that each plan created will benefit producers and their livestock by saving time and reducing losses,” Brzozowski says. “By implementing the plan, producers will have a better chance of maintaining a healthy and productive herd or flock. Most contagious diseases of livestock are unknowingly purchased by producers when they introduce new livestock on to their farm or mix their livestock with others. Every livestock producer ought to have a plan to prevent disease.”
For more information about writing a biosecurity plan, please contact Brzozowski at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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