Wyo Livestock Board releases revised rules for scrapie, trichomoniasisWritten by Saige Albert
On Jan. 22, the Wyoming Livestock Board (WLSB) released its Chapter 13 Scrapie Prevention and Management and Chapter 15 Trichomoniasis (trich) rules for public comment. The 45-day comment period is open until March 11.
Both rules were previously released, with comments ending Sept. 4, 2015. After several changes and revisions, the WLSB released the rules again for comments.
After the first release, public comments and a new proposed federal scrapie rule resulted in changes to the rule deemed “significant” by the Wyoming Attorney General.
Wyoming State Veterinarian Jim Logan explains, “Chapter 13 adds the requirement that all sexually intact goats must be identified prior to transfer of ownership. By doing so, it makes our rule more congruent with the expected federal scrapie rule.”
Logan also noted that the final federal rule has not yet been released.
Scrapie, a neurological disease of sheep and goats, is caused by an abnormal protein that causes a transmissible spongiform neuropathy similar to mad cow disease.
“The proposed rule provides guidance to the sheep and goat industries in the prevention of scrapie, which includes procedures to prevent spread within and between flocks,” WLSB said. “The revisions update citations to federal regulations, add a penalty for violations and clarify identification and recordkeeping requirements.”
Logan explained, “The scrapie rule will have an impact on producers. Those goat producers who have not had to identify their goats in a lot of situations will now have to put ID on all sexually intact animals.”
Clarifications in the most recent version of the Chapter 15 rules implement new testing strategies, which the WLSB marks as “financially beneficial to the industry.”
The new testing requirements specify the use of a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to identify the trichomonas organism that causes trichomoniasis.
“The main thing in the Chapter 15 rules is the addition of pooled testing,” Logan explained.
The original intent of the first rule was also to eliminate culture testing from the rule.
“The new version also specifies that we will not accept the culture test anymore,” Logan said.
Revisions further clarify certain testing requirements, movement restrictions for known-infected herds and exposed herds, veterinarian certification requirements and identification requirements.
“The new trich rule will have a very positive impact for producers and create a more user-friendly, veterinary-friendly, cost-friendly approach by allowing pooling,” he added. “I think, in the big picture, these rules will get us closer to identifying all trich cases in the state.”