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Ovine disease
Is sheep scab underdiagnosed?
  1. Charlotte Mouland, farm practitioner and
  2. Emily Gascoigne, specialist farm practitioner
  1. Synergy Farm Health, West Hill Barns, Evershot, Dorchester, Dorset DT2 0LD
  1. email: charlotte.mouland{at}

Statistics from

We write to express our growing concern about sheep scab both in our local area and across the UK.

We provide veterinary care for over 50,000 breeding sheep across the south west and over the past two years the number of suspected and confirmed cases of sheep scab we are attending is dramatically escalating. These cases are likely to be an underestimate of the true picture as many will go undiagnosed as the disease is not notifiable in England and Wales.

We are working with farmers where resistance to macrocyclic lactones in active Psoroptes ovis mites is suspected and being investigated.1 One such outbreak occurred during lambing, which presented challenges for the use of organophosphate plunge dipping due to the young age of lambs. …

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