The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) adopted amendments to §41.8 of the Texas Administrative Code concerning dipping, treatment, and vaccination of animals for fever ticks at a regularly-scheduled meeting May 9 in Austin.
The purpose of the amendments to §41.8 is to provide the designated fever tick epidemiologist (DFTE), with the approval of the executive director, the discretion to approve inspections, dipping, treatments and/or vaccination requirements that are less stringent than those currently prescribed, taking into consideration the circumstances of the affected producer, and the commission’s overarching goal to encourage producers to maintain cattle on affected premises.
“Our goal is eradication of cattle fever ticks, and biology of the tick allows no shortcuts to reaching that goal,” said Dr. Andy Schwartz, TAHC executive director. “Cattle maintained on or near premises have significant value as sentinel animals, and when found, become control agents of the fever tick. This rule change allows us to consider the rancher’s particular circumstances in developing a science-based plan encouraging continued stocking with cattle while ticks are eradicated.”
The TAHC strives to protect the health of all Texas cattle from fever ticks through surveillance, control, testing, and treatment of any livestock and/or wildlife that may serve as a host, while recognizing the importance of cattle production in all quarantine zones.
The amendments to §41.8 will go into effect on May 30, 2017.
For more information about the Cattle Fever Tick Eradication Program, visit www.tahc.texas.gov/animal_health/cattle/#ticks.