Sheep scab, caused by the parasitic mite Psoroptes ovi, is a major source of economic loss in affected flocks and is a serious threat to sheep welfare. Since the end of compulsory dipping in the 1990s there has been a 60-fold increase in sheep scab on UK farms (Source: Endemic sheep scab: risk factors and the behaviour of upland sheep flocks: Rose and Wall).
Concern has been growing regarding parasite resistance to 3-ML wormer injections. SCOPS, an industry led group that represents the interests of the sheep industry, recognises that resistance is one of the biggest challenges to the future health and profitability of the UK sheep industry. In its technical manual it highlights plunge dipping as the most effective means of scab control.
Plunge dipping, using organophosphates, if done correctly, can be exceptionally effective in the targeting external parasites. Dipping kills scab mites immediately and gives protection against scab for longer than the 17 days that the mite can survive in the environment.
Paxton Agricultural offers a range of sheep dips, manufactured from hard wearing, UV and chemical resistant polyethylene to meet the needs both sheep farmers whether they have large or small flocks.
The SD250 Sheep Dip has a capacity of 1136 litres and holds a single sheep at a time. It has ‘drain back’ exit steps and an anti-splash rim to reduce spillage
The larger SD275RH Sheep Dip has a 1250 litre capacity is suitable for 2-3 sheep at a time depending on their size. It boasts an integral right-hand entry slide, as well as ‘drain back’ exit steps and anti-splash rim.
Its ‘big brother’, the SD400LH Sheep Dip has a capacity of 1818 litres and can handle 3-4 animal at a time, again depending on size. With a left-hand entry slide this time, the SD400LH also has an anti-splash rim and ‘drain back’ exit steps.
All three sheep dips have smooth surfaces so as not to cause injury to the sheep.
If the trend back to sheep dipping persists, Paxton Agricultural is well placed to meet the demand.