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The average count across the region increased 12,500 last week to just over 40000 this week. The hotspots at the top of Dartmoor Road increased to from 50,000 to 95000, and 20,000 to 195,000 and Eskdale.

As expected spore counts have risen quickly after the rain last week. Now is a good time to start doing your own pasture cuts. You need a paper bag full - 60grams (¾ of a bread bag), cut as close to the ground as possible without contaminating the sample with dirt. It takes a while when grass is short, but if that’s what the stock are eating then take the time to sample correctly.

In most areas the risk is still classed as low, as counts go over 30,000 and pasture covers are low conditions become more dangerous for stock. Counts over 60,000 are considered high and even short term expose can cause disease.

Prioritising feed to stock, in terms of susceptibility the follow order can be used to prioritise any safer feed/areas on your farm

Regional Average Spore Counts

1. Replacement ewe lambs
2. Ewes
3. Trade lambs
4. Young cattle
5. Cows

Treatment options include

1. Spore counting and identifying safer areas on farm
2. Supplementary feed +/- Zinc Oxide
3. Forge crops
4. Zinc boluses
5. Fungicide sprays
6. Selling stock


The cooler nights will be helping keep the lid on the spore counts. Looks like more rain in the coming week, heavy rain can wash spores into the soil and decrease spore count on a temporary basis, and the cooler nights



This information is provided to keep you informed of the facial eczema risk in Hawkes Bay. It is provided as a guide only. Pasture spore counts can vary considerably across the region or even across a farm, for more specific advice for your property you should consult your Veterinary to devise your own risk management plan and conduct your own spore counting.

View more: HASTINGS FACIAL ECZEMA SPORE COUNT MONITOR - Week ending 12 March 2020 document

Thursday 12th of March 2020

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