The dairy industry in Pakistan is booming and investors are anxious to fund dairy farms that are using high milk producing (exotic) cattle breeds such as Holsteins that are not native to the country. Unfortunately, the benefits of increased milk production do not provide resistance to pathogens present in regions where the exotic breeds are introduced. Therefore, the current study was conducted to evaluate the economic impact of Theileria annulata on a commercial Holstein dairy farm in the District of Ranjanpur, in the Province of Punjab, Pakistan. The economic impact of T. annulata infection was calculated for cattle with subclinical and clinical theileriosis. Losses were estimated based on milk production, morbidity, mortality and tick control costs (organophosphate sprays). Animals were classified into groups after screening for mastitis, teat abnormality, abnormal parturition, intestinal parasites and hemoparasites (T. annulata, Babesia spp., and Anaplasma spp.). Microscopy was done for hemoparasites and intestinal parasites. PCR was used to confirm microscopic identification of T. annulata. Animals were classified into 3 groups, comprising group A (normal), group B (subclinical theileriosis) and group C (acute theileriosis). Hemoparasites were observed microscopically in 28.7% of cows. Theileria annulata was found in 8% and the herd incidence (new cases) of T. annulata was 2.8%. Milk production, animal rectal temperature and body condition scores of group A with B and C were significantly different (P<0.05). But the enlargement of sub-scapular lymph node and interval of body condition score of the 3 groups were not significant (P>0.05). The total expenditure incurred due to theileriosis was US $74.98 per animal and 13.83% of total farm costs. Hence theileriosis caused significant economic loss of US $18743.76 (0.02 million) on this Holstein Friesian dairy.
The Journal of Parasitology – Allen Press
Published: Mar 9, 2018
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