Laehmung Kuehe

Early Detection of Lameness in Cows

Painful hoof and limb ailments adversely affect the well-being of animals and lead to economic losses. The current study therefore compares the behaviour of healthy and slightly lame dairy cows in loose housing on twenty Swiss commercial farms. The aim is to identify differences that can be used for an early, automated detection of lameness, and can thus contribute to the prevention of serious ailments. 

Social Boxes Foster Contact with Stall Neighbours

Special individual boxes allowed stallions at the Swiss National Stud to interact with one another without the occurrence of serious injuries. Thanks to the vertical bars, they were able to play, feed or rest together. This new type of box wall therefore represents an enrichment for horses housed on their own. A solution for preventing skin abrasions caused by bumping the head against the vertical bars must still be found, possibly by cushioning the metal. 

Bienen Varroa

Varroa Treatment in Mild Winters

Warm winter weather may mean that the queen bee continues to lay eggs, reducing the effectiveness of the winter treatment against Varroa. Our experiments showed Varroa to have a significant presence in the brood cells. Thus, even in mild winters the broodless colony should be treated with oxalic acid. If necessary, the winter brood must be destroyed. Alternatively, the queen can be confined for 25 days. This will prevent her from laying eggs, and the broodless colony can then be treated. 

Foulbrood Identification Method Accredited

European and American foulbrood are serious bee diseases and are therefore notifiable animal diseases. A method recently developed by Agroscope now makes it possible to simultaneously identify a specific DNA sequence for each of pathogens. The method has been authorised. Agroscope’s Centre for Bee Research is a reference laboratory, and can thus support authorities and recognised laboratories with diagnosis.

Healthy Bees and Pollination Security