Friday, 06 October 2023 08:55

Probiotics deliver ‘outstanding’ results in mastitis control

Written by  Staff Reporters
John and Donna McCarty’s herd in Kaponga has been antibiotic free for four years. John and Donna McCarty’s herd in Kaponga has been antibiotic free for four years.

Probiotic Revolution claims that farmers using its probiotics are achieving outstanding results in mastitis control.

These products have been used to treat clinical cases as well as at dryingoff, or with springers and during lactation.

The company says the best results have been achieved by John and Donna McCarty, who milk 350 cows at Kaponga.

The first year they had their herd on BioRumen, primarily to improve feed conversion efficiency, they treated a hand full of clinical mastitis cases with Bovine Boost – and they all came right. As a result, the McCartys were determined to go antibiotic free the following season.

They sat down with Probiotic Revolution’s Chris Collier to work out how to do this, the company says.

“The first step was to pick out their high somatic cell count cows at dryingoff and treat their trough with Bovine Boost for five days.

“That winter the only cows with dry period mastitis were with the low somatic cell count cows that didn’t have any kind of treatment.

“The springers then received the same probiotic the milkers were getting and calving mastitis cases were halved, but the most staggering result was with the treatment of clinical cases with Bovine Boost.”

Over the next two years 24 of the 25 cases per year cleaned up with Bovine Boost. Collier says he has never heard of such good results with any other type of treatment, including antibiotics, unless all the infections were Streph uberis at calving.

The McCartys say they love the program to control mastitis.

“It’s not a hassle to jump up on the platform to treat the odd cow,” says John.

“You don’t have to worry about antibiotic milk going in the vat, and our vet bill has been absolutely slashed.”

The McCarty’s have now been antibiotic free for four years and Collier was keen to see if they could take their results to a new level by cutting down further on calving mastitis cases. Extra bacteria were added to the pre-calving mix to get to levels used on springers on other farms, and the McCartys got to a record low of four calving mastitis cases and cell counts in early spring down to 100,000.

“We are so pleased,” says Donna.

“We have had such a wet August, and with cows coming to an open feed pad daily, we were having to wash mud off freshly calved cows. Given those conditions you would expect lots more mastitis.”

Collier says he has achieved similar results on several other farms but has also seen results vary.

“In terms of cure rates, the best results will be achieved when cows are already on the daily ration – Rumicell – to keep their immune system ticking over. Then it is important to have a very good mineral intake – particularly minerals such as selenium, that are known to help immune function. If these things are right, then we have a low-cost system to control mastitis and help production,” says Collier.

More like this

Farmers fined for cattle abuse

A Waikato cattle farming family have been fined $23,000 for failing to provide sufficient food and care for their animals, resulting in more than half a dozen animal deaths.

App trial yields promising results

An initial trial of an app, funded by Beef + Lamb New Zealand, has demonstrated significant results in reducing drench inputs during a small-scale study.

Setting calvers up for a top season

Ensuring autumn calvers are receiving a balanced ration of macro and micro minerals will go a long way to setting them up for a successful season.

Busybrook obsession pays off

The numbers suggest the cow families on offer at the upcoming Busybrook Holsteins sale in North Otago are as good as you’ll find anywhere.


Learnings from tractor incident

A near miss experienced by a North Island farmer worker when their tractor ‘park’ gear failed, has been shared as the latest Safety Alert from Safer Farms.

Frontline biosecurity 'untouchable'

Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard has reiterated that 'frontline' biosecurity services within Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will not be cut under the Government's plan to reduce the public service.

Migrant farmer 'lets the side down'

An appalling case of migrant worker exploitation on a Southland farm isn't acceptable, says Federated Farmers dairy chair Richard McIntyre.

Milk price certainty

Westland Milk has reaffirmed its commitment to pay farmer suppliers 10c above Fonterra farm gate milk price for the following two seasons.


Share farmers with big plans

With only about eight weeks to go before their cows are dried off, the 2024 Manawatu Dairy Industry Awards Share…

Team effort brings results

For the team at Westmorland Estate Limited in Waikato, it has been another year of everyone working together to achieve…

Machinery & Products

New name, new ideas

KGM New Zealand, is part of the London headquartered Inchcape Group, who increased its NZ presence in August 2023 with…

All-terrain fert spreading mode

Effluent specialists the Samson Group have developed a new double unloading system to help optimise uphill and downhill organic fertiliser…

Can-Am showcases range

Based on industry data collected by the Motor Industry Association, Can-Am is the number one side-by-side manufacturer in New Zealand.

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Exploited by one of their own

OPINION: Milking It believes a recent Employment Relations Authority ruling on the exploitation of three migrant workers from Indonesia highlights…

'Not our fault!'

OPINION: Milking It wasn’t too surprised to hear Kiwis’ trust in media has sunk to a new low.

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter