WHO'S looking after biosecurity on the farm while you're away?
For many producers, particularly those with smaller operations, a Christmas holiday may mean leaving your livestock under the supervision of others.
Animal Health Australia's executive manager of Biosecurity Services, Duncan Rowland, is reminding producers to reiterate the importance of on-farm biosecurity practices to their chosen farm caretakers.
"Many farmers will leave their livestock under the care of others, such as neighbours, friends and family, professional animal minding services, or, possibly, inexperienced staff.
"Regardless of who is looking after the property, it is important that producers ensure that the people who are minding their animals are briefed on your expectations about basic on-farm biosecurity principals.
"Your farm caretakers will need to be aware of simple practices like managing vehicles, people and equipment coming on to your property, ensuring the water supply is kept fresh and away from insects and faeces, and ensuring feed or farm supplies are obtained through your existing and trusted suppliers, as well as simply monitoring your stock," said Mr Rowland.
Wool merino stud producer and 2013 Biosecurity Farmer of the Year finalist Richard Halliday also highlighted the importance of having the right person look after your stock.
"You need an experienced person that is aware of your own biosecurity practices. They need to know what you would do to resolve a biosecurity issue and know how to resolve it as quick as possible," Richard said.
If the person managing your farm while you're away on Christmas holiday is not familiar with your biosecurity practices, direct them to http://www.farmbiosecurity.com.au and follow the links to the 'six essentials' of farm biosecurity.
The Farm Biosecurity Program is a joint initiative of Animal Health Australia and Plant Health Australia managed on behalf of members.