National Scrapie Plan

British National Scrapie Plan explained

source: Mary Castell
Country Smallholding December 2003
starts p34, 2 pages long

The British National Scrapie Plan aims to reduce the level of scrapie in British flocks, to remove the possibility that scrapie could be transmitted to humans, though no cases of such transmission have been recorded. British sheep are being tested to check for their genetic vulnerability to scrapie, and are being classified into five types, Type One having the least genetic susceptibility to scrapie, and type five being most at risk. Information on this plan can be found at Type Five rams should not be used as breeding stock. There were more than 8,500 breeders in the scheme by April 2003, with more than 500,000 rams tested from Breed Society registered flocks. Only 0.4% of rams were in the Type Five category, with 0.4% also reported for Type Four. Type Three accounted for 27%, Type Two for 39%, and 26% were reported as falling into the Type One category, with most resistance to scrapie.

Meanwhile, sheep owners should ensure that their sheep are not vulnerable to footrot, and this means ensuring that land is well drained, especially where sheep eat and drink. Mud can also cause problems by encouraging infection and the retention of grit, which lead to lacerations and subsequent infection. Providing some hardcore on trackways and at gates can help reduce sheeps' exposure to mud. Sheep first came from mountainous areas in western Asia, and these areas do not harbour bacteria that thrives in wetter, lowland terrain.