What Is Mad Cow Disease? Cow in Scotland Discovered with Illness – Newsweek

A neurological disorder that impacts cattle was found in a cow at a farm in Scotland. Mad Cow disease, otherwise known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, rapidly spreads and damages the central nervous system of the infected cows and kills them, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The disease causes erratic behavior among cows that are infected as it breaks down the tissues in their brains.

The case found in Scotland was isolated, the BBC reported. It occurred on a farm near the Huntly area, and after the case was discovered a movement ban was placed on the herd at the farm.

The disease was found in an animal after it was dead but before it was turned into food or came in contact with other food for consumption, the BBC reported. There is still an investigation into where the disease could have originated.

This case is one of less than 20 found in the United Kingdom since 2011. Tests are done regularly to check animals for the disease that can spread rapidly to keep the cases at bay.

In 1995, there were 14,562 cases of BSE in the U.K. and in the years following there were significantly fewer cases. Exactly how the disease spreads isn’t well understood by those who study the disease. It’s known that the disease transfers through proteins called prions. What is unknown is how exactly it’s transferred so that another cow gets sick with the disease.

Researchers think the prion might form from a normal prion protein and change to a bad protein that’s harmful to the cows. It likely first started making the rounds in cows in the 1970s, but researchers aren’t completely sure.

There is evidence of different types or strains of BSE, or mad cow disease, according to the CDC. There is the classic BSE found in the U.K. and then also possibly H and L strains as well that are more common in the United States and in Canada.

There is very little risk to humans because the cows have been isolated and were not used for food when they were infected.

GettyImages-463381584 A cow is silhouetted on a pasture near the Trans-Canada Highway north of Calgary, Alberta, on February 13, 2015. Mad cow disease, a neurological disorder that impacts cattle, was found in a cow at a farm in Scotland. Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images

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Cow Methane Emissions Reduced By Swiss Company Agolin – CleanTechnica

Agriculture

Published on October 19th, 2018 |
by Jake Richardson

October 19th, 2018 by Jake Richardson 


The Swiss company Agolin has developed feed additives which reduce methane emissions from cows, and methane is one of the key greenhouse gases. The company was founded in 2006 and uses botanical compounds in the additives. Michael Roe, Agolin’s Commercial Director, answered some questions for CleanTechnica.

Do your feed additives reduce both methane and CO2 generation from cow burps and flatulence?

Trials show our product Agolin Ruminant acts on methane-producing microbes, reducing methanogenesis and resulting in reduced levels of methane through eructation or “burps.”

Is the idea that farmers would mix your products into their cow food? Or could cow feed be made to have it already present?


Either option is possible, although generally it comes to the farmer through the feed they purchase from a feed mill or mineral premix company.

What incentives do farmers have to reduce methane and CO2 emissions?

Unfortunately, there are very few countries or dairy companies offering anything to farmers to reduce methane emissions from their cows, but this may be changing as the consumer seeks out products which are produced in a sustainable way. However, the use of our product in cows also improves feed efficiency, according to our trials and the Carbon Trust, so the farmer can benefit financially in this way.

Do your additives work on other animals too, like goats, sheep and pigs?

Agolin Ruminant has been shown to work in other ruminants like sheep. Monogastric animals such as pigs and poultry do not produce methane in the same quantity or way as ruminants. We also produce a range for these animals which improve feed efficiency, thereby reducing the need for inputs to achieve the same production.

What are your additives made of?

Our products are a specially formulated blend of plant-based ingredients, coming from wild carrot, coriander, and nutmeg for instance. These ingredients have been selected for their ability to have an effect on methane and production.

How did you figure out which additives reduce animal methane and CO2 production?

It was a long and detailed screening of plant active substances, also looking for synergies and cost-effective activity which led to the final product.

How much do you additives cost per cow per meal, or is it more accurate to say per 100 cows?

Cost to the farmer is about 3 cent (Euro) per adult cow per day.

How many farmers are currently using your products and on how many cows?

Presently, we are feeding the equivalent of around 1 million cows, but this is growing quickly. It is the equivalent of about 4% of all dairy cows in Europe.

How much methane and CO2 is not being generated because of your feed additives?

A cow produces about 110kgs of methane per year (400-600 liters per day). The Global Warming Potential (GWP of methane is about 25 times that of CO2, so the output of 1 million cows is about 2.6m tonnes of CO2–equivalent Greenhouse Gases (GHG’s) each year. Agolin Ruminant can reduce this by about 10-15%, thereby saving at least 260,000 tonnes of CO2-eq each year at current numbers being fed our product.

Do you see a growing trend in farmers using methane and CO2 reducing feed additives?

Most definitely. A recent UN Report references the increasing problem of global temperature increase, which will be well in excess of the limits proposed at the Paris Climate Summit in 2015. Nations will need to act decisively now in order to address this issue and while there is no single solution to reducing CO2, the report suggests a “hail of silver bullets” might offer the best chance. We can be part of that.

Are more European or American farmers using these additives currently?

Europe is leading the way presently, but there is a growing interest and usage in North America and Asia.

Could it be possible in theory to be able to use feed additives to one day reduce methane and CO2 generation in cows to zero?

Unlikely in the short-term, but anything is possible in my view. A lot of investment and research is now going into this area and some interesting results are coming out. The questions are: Are they viable and cost-effective? Do they have any side effects on the animal or the environment? Do they offer a long-term solution and do they continue to work in the animal over long periods of time?

There are many questions like these to be answered by research going forward. Here at Agolin our research has shown that we can answer many of these questions. The Carbon Trust, a leading authority on sustainability in industry, has issued Agolin Ruminant with a Certificate of Achievement as a methane reducer and improver of feed efficiency in cattle and dairy cows. Also the Solar Impulse The Foundation for Efficient Solutions has endorsed our product. These independent accolades are a first in this area for methane reduction and offer further support in the use of Agolin Ruminant in cattle and dairy cows.

Image Credit: Robert Merkel, Wikipedia, Public domain


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Tags: Agolin, Agriculture, cows, Methane, Switzerland


About the Author

Jake Richardson Hello, I have been writing online for some time, and enjoy the outdoors. If you like, you can follow me on Google Plus.



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Several cows in herd of BSE case to be destroyed in Scotland – Sky News

The offspring of a cow that was identified to have BSE – or mad cow disease – will be killed as a precaution.

Several other cows in the herd will also be destroyed after the infected beef bovine was identified during routine testing in Scotland.

The disease did not enter the human food chain, according to a statement issued through the National Farmers Union of Scotland.

Farmer Thomas Jackson said he and his wife had found the discovery at their farm in Aberdeen “personally devastating”.

The condition causes similar symptoms to mad cow disease
Image:
Scotland had not had a case of mad cow disease since 2009. File pic

Mr Jackson said: “We have built up our closed herd over many years and have always taken great pride in doing all the correct things. To find through the surveillance system in place that one of our cows has BSE has been heartbreaking.

“Since this has happened we have been fully co-operating with all the parties involved and will continue to do so as we like everyone want to move forward and clear up this matter.

“The cohorts and offspring of the cow have now been identified and as a purely precautionary measure they will be slaughtered and tested in due course; again we are fully co-operating with all the parties with regards to this.”

Upon confirmation of the discovery, Scotland’s chief veterinary officer Sheila Voas moved to assure the public that it did not represent a threat to human health.

No source of the disease has yet been identified, but Ms Voas said its detection was “proof that our surveillance system is doing its job”.

The case marked the first time the fatal neurodegenerative disease had been discovered in Scotland since 2009, and the first time in the UK since it was found in Wales in 2015.

More from Scotland

Its presence in the UK has been muted since the infection of 180,000 cattle in the 1990s, which led to 4.4 million being slaughtered during an eradication programme.

The disease can be passed to humans who have eaten infected flesh, when it becomes known as Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), which has killed 177 people in the UK.

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Mad cow disease found on Scotland farm, government says – Fox News

A case of mad cow disease was recently discovered on a farm in Scotland, the Scottish government confirmed Thursday.

The disease, also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), was confirmed on a farm in Aberdeenshire, located in the eastern part of the country. The isolated case does “does not represent a threat to human health,” government officials said in a statement, noting it did not enter the country’s food supply.

MICHIGAN OFFICIALS SAY LARGEMOUTH BASS VIRUS CONFIRMED IN LAKE

It is the first case of the disease found on a farm in the U.K. since 2015, Bloomberg reported.

“Following confirmation of a case of classical BSE in Aberdeenshire, I have activated the Scottish Government’s response plan to protect our valuable farming industry, including establishing a precautionary movement ban being placed on the farm,” Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said in a statement.

Though officials are not sure where the case of BSE on the Aberdeenshire farm originated from, “its detection is proof that our surveillance system is doing its job,” Sheila Voas, Scotland’s chief veterinary officer, added.

Mad cow disease is a “progressive neurological disorder of cattle that results from infection by an unusual transmissible agent called a prion,” according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The fatal disease slowly affects the animal’s brain, typically resulting in aggressiveness, nervousness and other behavioral changes. The disease also affects the animal’s coordination, causing trembling or stumbling, according to The Center for Food Security and Public Health at Iowa State University.

Scientists think the disease is caused when cows eat feed “contaminated with parts that came from another cow that was sick with BSE. The contaminated feed contains the abnormal prion, and a cow becomes infected with the abnormal prion when it eats the feed,” the U.S. Food & Drug Administration said.

 PROTECTIONS RESTORED FOR GRIZZLY BEARS; HUNTS BLOCKED

People can be infected with a version of mad cow called Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) after eating meat or food made from cows that have been infected with BSE, according to the FDA. Cows and humans are similarly affected by the disease. Humans infected with vCJD die within a year, according to The Center for Food Security and Public Health, which added there is no cure for the disease.

Britain grappled with a massive outbreak throughout the 1990s when hundreds of thousands of cattle were diagnosed with BSE, resulting n a worldwide ban on beef exports from the U.K.

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Watch: MPI investigates cow clamping – New Zealand Herald

Federated Farmers says a cow being left hoisted in hip clamps for hours and alone would be “totally unacceptable” but most people are pretty responsible.

Claims a South Westland farmer left a cow hoisted for an unacceptably long time are being investigated.

British tourist Ed Shephard was driving through South Westland on October 12 when he saw a cow suspended by hip clamps and reported it to animal welfare lobby group SAFE.

Mr Shepherd told SAFE he returned two hours later to see the cow still in the clamps and on his return on Saturday morning, he witnessed the cow being suspended again, he said.

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“I used to live in one of the big dairy strongholds in the UK but had never seen anything like that before.

“I waited for a while but she was just left there. Even when a farm worker drove past her they didn’t stop. To me it looked like she was suffering and had just been abandoned.”

West Coast Federated Farmers president Peter Langford said the length of time alleged would be an issue.

“It’s an unacceptable behaviour animal welfare-wise.”

However, it was allowed under strict guidelines for 10 minutes at a time maximum such as after a difficult birth or milk fever, where a cow struggling to get up would otherwise die if left on the ground.

“Ten minutes while you are there, to get them to get up and let them get the blood circulating again. I think most people are pretty responsible,” Mr Langford said.

The circumstances in this particular case were not yet clear and something might have happened no-one could have foreseen which left the cow hoisted for too long.

SAFE took the complaint to Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI).

MPI today confirmed it was investigating but said the fact a farmer was using a hip clamp to lift a cow was in itself not an issue. However, the alleged length of time was.

An MPI spokeswoman said hip clamps were legal and used to assist an animal in some circumstances. However, it needed to investigate before they could say if there was an issue.

“Our investigation is continuing into the length of time the cow was in the hip clamp,” MPI said.

In a statement, SAFE said it was told by MPI it could not investigate because it only had 23 inspectors, and the closest was in Christchurch. The MPI staffer then suggested SAFE take the complaint to police instead.

SAFE’s head of campaigns Marianne Macdonald said it showed animal welfare resourcing was falling critically short.

“This is yet more evidence that MPI is not up to the job of protecting the millions of farmed animals in New Zealand. It is completely unacceptable that the department responsible for upholding animal welfare on farms can’t respond to complaints.”

MPI said that it was correct the complainant was advised by them to call police, as they did not have any animal welfare inspectors in South Westland.

“It was the best option in the circumstances. Police are warranted animal welfare inspectors under the Animal Welfare Act,” MPI said.

Mr Langford said the claim MPI had no staff to respond in South Westland seemed extraordinary, given the agency often drew on locally based resources such as vets.

“I would have thought in the worst case scenario they would have rung the local vet. There’s ways and means surely.”

The New Zealand Veterinary Association suggests that hip clamps should be used for no longer than 10 minutes, and also advises the use of padding between the cow and the hip clamp device.

– Greymouth Star

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Fugitive cow gets stuck in car dealership, wrecks the place – Fox News

A runaway cow that escaped from a cattle market almost got away until she made a wrong turn into a car dealership.

Employees at Arnold Clark Stirling Mazda in Stirling, Scotland, were shocked when they saw the heifer hoof into their showroom.

The baffled bovine then went on a 20-second rampage among the Mazdas that caused $2,000 worth of damage to a MX-5 Miata and Mazda2 as it crashed through a sliding door and ran into the parking lot.

Sales manager, James Merrins, told SWNS that the encounter was one of the most "bizarre" days of his life.

"We were standing in the showroom then I saw one of my guys running towards us shouting ‘cow cow cow’. Next thing you know the cow was in the showroom and it looked as calm as you like. But when the automatic doors shut behind it, it began to panic and that’s when we all run for it into the offices because there was no way of stopping it.”

The cow was eventually caught and returned to the livestock dealer, who was apologetic and agreed to pay for the damages.

"They have said they will reimburse everything which is great and I even got a lovely bottle of whisky as an apology," Merrins said.

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Know the USDA Cull Cow Grades Before You Send Them to Market – Drovers Magazine

Some culling of beef cows occurs in most herds every year. The Beef Audits have generally shown that cull cows, bulls, and cull dairy cows make up about 20% of the beef available for consumption in the United States. About half of this group (or 10% of the beef supply) comes from cull beef cows.

Whether we are culling because of drought or to improve the productivity of the herd, it is important to understand the values placed on cull cows intended for slaughter.

The USDA market news service reports on four classes of cull cows (not destined to be replacements). The four classes are divided primarily on fatness. The highest conditioned cull cows are reported as “Breakers”. They usually are quite fleshy and generally have excellent dressing percentages. Body condition score 7 and above are required to be “Breakers”.

Breakers

The next class is a more moderate conditioned group of cows called “Boning Utility”. These cows usually would fall in the body condition score grades of 5 to 7. Many well-nourished commercial beef cows would be graded “Boning utility” cows.

Boning

The last two grades of cows as reported by the market news service are the “Leans” and “Lights”. These cows are very thin (Body condition scores 1 – 4). They are in general expected to be lower in dressing percentage than the fleshier cows and are more easily bruised while being transported than are cows in better body condition. “Lights” are thin cows that are very small and would have very low hot carcass weights.

Leans

Lights

Leans and Lights are nearly always lower in price per pound than are the Boning Utility and the Breakers. “Lights” often bring the lowest price per pound because the amount of saleable product is small, even though the overhead costs of slaughtering and processing are about the same as larger, fleshier cows. Also thin cows are more susceptible to bruising while in transit to market and to the harvest plant. Therefore, more trim loss is likely to occur with thin cull cows than with those in better body condition.

Producers that sell cull cows should pay close attention to the market news reports about the price differentials of the cows in these classes. Cull cows that can be fed enough to gain body condition to improve from the Lean class to Boning Utility class can gain weight and gain in value per pound at the same time. Seldom, if ever, does this situation exist elsewhere in the beef business. Therefore during the fall and early winter, market your cull cows while still in good enough condition to fall in the Boning Utility grade. If cows are being culled while very thin, consider short term dry lot feeding to take them up in weight and up in grade. This usually can be done in about 50 to 70 days with excellent feed efficiency. Rarely does it pay to feed enough to move the cows to “Breaker” class. There is very little, if any, price per pound advantage of Breakers over Boning Utility and cows lose feed efficiency if fed to that degree of fatness.

Dressing percentage within each of the four grades will also play a major role in the price per pound of cull cows. Dressing percentage will be discussed in next week’s Cow Calf Corner Newsletter. The current cow and bull market for Oklahoma City National can be found at this web link. https://www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/ko_ls151.txt

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Cow euthanized, 13 others trapped, after silo collapse – WCVB Boston

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WCVB Boston

Cow euthanized, 13 others trapped, after silo collapse
WCVB Boston
One cow was euthanized after a barn collapse at a farm in Lunenburg, according to the Lunenburg Police Department. According to police, a silo containing grain collapsed onto the main barn at Cherry Hill Farm shortly before 11 a.m. …
Cow killed in silo collapse, several others trappedTurn to 10
Cow dies, 13 calves trapped when silo collapses on Lunenburg barnMassLive.com
Cows rescued after silo collapses in LunenburgWorcester Telegram
WWLP.com -Patch.com
all 19 news articles »

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Budget 2019: Suckler farmers to receive €40/cow under new suckler payment, 10pc increase in ANC payments, Brexit … – Independent.ie

Overall, the Budget is mixed news for farmers, who have been campaigning for a new €200 payment for suckler cows. The idea had support from Fianna Fáil, but Mr Donohoe ruled out a €200 payment, but looks like a smaller payment will be made to farmers.

Minister Donohue announced €40m for the rehabilitation of rural roads during his Budget speech today.

The Budget will allow for major changes to the Fair Deal scheme that will benefit farmers and small business owners.

Under the existing regime, farm families are required to set aside 7.5pc of the value of their land annually to fund a place in a nursing home.

From next year, this bill will be capped at three years, giving farmland and business assets the same status as the family home.Families are to benefit from 100,000 extra GP-only medical cards, increased childcare subsidies and an income tax cut in today’s Budget.

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has backtracked on long-planned increases to petrol and diesel through carbon tax. Other measures include:

  • Back to School Allowance up €25;
  • Fuel Allowance extended by a week;
  • 25c increase to the minimum wage;
  • Home Carers’ Tax Credit up €300;
  • Inheritance Tax threshold to rise by €10,000 to €320,000;
  •  ‘Granny-flat’ grant.

Workers will get €5 a week back through changes to the income tax bands and USC, while all social welfare recipients, including pensioners, will also get a €5 boost. These  will be primarily paid for by a VAT rise to 13.5pc in the hospitality sector.

It’s also understood that Health Minister Simon Harris’s budget is to stretch beyond €16bn next year. This will allow for 100,000 new GP-only medical cards, a 50pc per item reduction in prescription costs for older people and a lowering by €10 of the maximum a family can pay for medicine in a single month.

The talks on the Budget went down to the wire last night after the Independent Alliance members of Government arrived in Paschal Donohoe’s office with fresh demands.

It is understood they secured a €10,000 rise in the existing threshold for inheritance tax for children who are left property by their parents – something Taoiseach Leo Varadkar ruled out just last month.

Opinions on carbon tax remained divided in Government last night, but well-placed sources said planned hikes had been dropped.

Mr Donohoe has faced lobbying from his own TDs who feared a backlash in rural Ireland. It is understood he will target diesel cars through registration tax instead.

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