Disease prevention is much easier and less expensive than treating an outbreak and the University of Maine has developed a template designed for sheep and goat producers in any region of the country to create a customized biosecurity plan for their farms.
With funding from Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, the plan was developed jointly by the University of Maine Extension Educator Richard Brzozowski and University of Maryland Extension Sheep and Goat Specialist Susan Schoenian.
Producers are encouraged to read and respond to a short series of questions or statements from which a customized document will be created at no charge. Each farm's biosecurity plan will be saved at a secure location and will be available to producers via a specific password the producer creates. Producers also can save and print their own plan and may update, revise or delete their plan at any time. All information will be confidential.
"The hope is that each plan created will benefit producers and their livestock by saving time and reducing losses," Brzozowski says. "By implementing the plan, producers will have a better chance of maintaining a healthy and productive herd or flock. Most contagious diseases of livestock are unknowingly purchased by producers when they introduce new livestock on to their farm or mix their livestock with others. Every livestock producer ought to have a plan to prevent disease."
The link to write an individual biosecurity plan is www.sheepandgoat.com/biosecurity. For more information about writing a plan, contact Brzozowski at firstname.lastname@example.org.