We previously described the first results of the large mastitis survey in Australia conducted by Dairy Focus and funded by Pfizer Animal Health, which found that 90% of clinical mastitis was due to four major bacteria - Strep uberis, Staph aureus, E. coli & Strep dysgalactiae.

But are any particular bacteria more common at different stages of lactation? Does the age of the cow make any difference?

The stage of lactation appears to have had little influence on which of the four major bacteria were isolated in this survey.

Strep uberis remained the dominant pathogen at all stages of lactation, with no clear trends of increasing or decreasing rates of Staph aureus, E. coli or Strep dysgalactiae.

Major Path stage lactation web

In terms of the cows' parity (number of calves), the results also showed a reasonably consistent pattern across all age groups - Strep uberis being the most common at all ages, although it was even more common in first calf heifers.

Parity web

Clearly, Australian dairy herds need to ensure their mastitis control programs take proper account of Strep uberis at all ages and at all stages of lactation.

To view an edited version of the full presentation given at the Countdown Symposium, click here.


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