National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) 2011 Sheep study |

National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) 2011 Sheep study

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) is currently working on the 2011 Sheep Study.

NAHMS conducts national studies on the health and management of the U.S. livestock, poultry and aquaculture industries. These studies are designed to meet the information needs of the industries and other stakeholders-as identified by those working with these industries.

NAHMS has conducted two previous studies of the U.S. sheep industry, Sheep 1996 and Sheep 2001. NAHMS Sheep 2011 study will continue to address the priority issues of the U.S. sheep industry and its stakeholders. Twenty-two states will participate in the study. These States represent 70 percent of U.S. sheep flocks and 85 percent of U.S. sheep.

“If you are contacted to participate in the on-site phase of the study, we encourage you to do so. Only by gathering good field information and samples can we help the industry assess its real live problems,” said Jim Logan, DVM, chair of the American Sheep Industry Association’s Animal Health Committee. “Pharmaceutical and biological companies look to the NAHMS studies for statistical data to determine the need for a product and if that product will be marketable.”

The Sheep 2011 study will:

• Describe trends in sheep health and management practices from 1996 to 2011. Describe management and biosecurity practices used to control common infectious diseases, including scrapie, ovine progressive pneumonia, Johne’s disease and caseous lymphadenitis. Estimate the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites and anthelmintic resistance.

• Estimate the prevalence of Mycoplasma ovipneumonia in domestic sheep flocks. Relate presence of the organism in blood and nasal secretions to clinical signs and demographic and management factors.

• Facilitate the collection of information and samples regarding the causes of abortion storms in sheep.

• Determine producer awareness of the zoonotic potential of contagious ecthyma (sore mouth) and the management practices used to prevent transmission of the disease.

• Provide serum to include in the serological bank for future research.

• By gathering reliable and valuable information on the U.S. sheep industry, the Sheep 2011 study will help to:

– Provide the producers and practitioners of tomorrow with information on current management practices,

– Help policymakers and industry make informed decisions,

– Measure the impact of disease,

– Assist researchers and private enterprise to identify and focus on vital issues related to sheep health and productivity, and

– Conduct economic analyses of the health and production of the U.S. sheep industry.

Participation in all NAHMS studies is voluntary. Randomly selected producers who choose to participate in the study will be visited by representatives from USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service from January through February 2011. During this visit, an on-site questionnaire will be administered. Eligible producers will also be asked to participate in the second phase of the study.

Producers who participate in the second phase will be visited by veterinary medical officers and/or animal health technicians who will administer questionnaires and collect biological samples beginning in March 2011.

Because NAHMS’ studies rely on voluntary participation, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) protects the privacy of every participant. Only those collecting the data know the identity of the respondent. No name or address is ever recorded in any APHIS database. No data will be reported on any individual or in a manner that would allow the identification of an individual.

The Sheep 2011 Fact Sheet is available at

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