Article Text

Epidemiology of Salmonella typhimurium infection in calves: excretion of S typhimurium in the faeces of calves in different management systems
  1. C Wray,
  2. JN Todd and
  3. M Hinton
  1. Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Central Veterinary Laboratory, New Haw, Weybridge, Surrey.

Abstract

Twenty-five batches of market-purchased calves, comprising 589 animals on 11 farms, were examined for the excretion of salmonellas for at least 28 days after their arrival. Salmonellas were found in 217 (51 per cent) of 423 calves from 18 of 21 batches on nine farms. The calves were housed in single pens on eight farms and in groups on the others. The trends in new excreters and the proportion of Salmonella typhimurium excreters were similar in both types of housing, a peak of excretion which was slightly higher in single penned calves, being reached 18 to 19 days after arrival. New excreters were found at most samplings in both types of housing, but the peak of new excreters appeared earlier and declined sooner in single penned calves. On average, single penned animals excreted salmonellas longer. Salmonella dublin was found only in single-penned calves, and the trend in excretion was similar to that for S typhimurium in single-penned calves except that the peak was at about 28 days. Prophylactic feeding of antibiotics was practised on nine farms, but appeared to have no influence on the excretion of salmonellas. Salmonellas were isolated from the environment in six of nine farms studied, even after cleaning and disinfection. It is suggested that the persistence of salmonellas in the environment deserves more attention in the formulation of control programmes.

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