There was a time when mastitis ravaged dairy herds across the globe.

To combat this disease, researchers and educators alike began to coalesce around the idea of developing and implementing a “Five-Point Mastitis Control Plan.” That work four decades ago involved:

  1. Milking machine checks
  2. Teat spraying
  3. Treating clinical cases
  4. Dry-cow therapy
  5. Controlled culling

Sharing that new message with dairy farmers took many forms in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In some countries, cartoonists illustrated the “Five-Point Mastitis Control Plan” through comics. However, hands down, the most unique way took place in New Zealand with the Waikato Dairy Lab Singers.

At this year’s 57th National Mastitis Council annual meeting, Eric Hillerton with New Zealand’s Massey University shared some of those tunes first recorded in 1975 and published by New Zealand’s Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries as “Mastitis Melodies.” The assembled crowd gave those melodies a roaring round of applause. Those recordings became hugely popular, according to Hillerton, and even garnered radio time across the island nation. Quite frankly, it’s a classic way that extension specialists engaged farmers.

Listen to those songs

You may click on these links to hear some of those classic recordings.

Five-point mastitis control plan. Song — Remember Old Smokey

1. Machine checks. Song — Machine checks

2. Teat spraying. Song — Treat your teats

3. Treating clinical cases. Song — Three blind teats

4. Dry-cow therapy. Song — Treat your udders with a dry cow tube

5. Controlled culling. Song — Ain’t it all a blooming shame

There are others songs at WFMU radio. We hope you enjoy.

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(c) Hoard's Dairyman Intel 2018
March 19, 2018
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