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Leader Products launches mulesing clips
06
May '09
A new alternative for controlling flystrike is now on the market in time for the 2009 lambing season.

Leader Products have been licensed by AWI to produce the Anti-flystrike Clips, which are now available through Leader Products and accredited contractors.

“AWI is committed to delivering viable flystrike control alternatives to woolgrowers,” said AWI CEO Brenda McGahan. AWI has fast-tracked the R&D program since 2004 to ensure woolgrowers have a range of options to select from in managing flystrike.

“While mulesing remains the most effective means of reducing breech wrinkle and breech wool cover, the clips are a new alternative on the market.”

The management of flystrike requires a systems approach, tapping in to all the available tools such as crutching, jetting, pasture management and monitoring.

The 2009 clips are made from conventional polypropylene (plastic) and can be removed between 8 and 14 days after application. Clips can be re-used at least once, thereby significantly reducing the cost per lamb.

R&D continues to develop a “bio-degradable” clip. The first prototypes were field-tested in 2008, with a number of improvements adopted for testing on 2009 drop lambs. It is hoped that a biodegradable clip will be on the market in 2010.

AWEX CEO Mark Grave said “Wool from sheep treated with clips is eligible to be declared as 'Non-Mulesed' (NM) on the National Wool Declaration (NWD). If clips are applied to all lambs on a property, and the grower intends to continue this as a routine practice, then the wool from other sheep (eg ewes previously mulesed) on the property are eligible to be declared as 'Ceased Mulesing' (CM) on the NWD.

“It's crucial that growers declare their wool clip through the NWD as this sends important information to our customers.” Ms McGahan said.

Clips are simple technology and will be suitable for some, but not all producers and sheep. AWI encourages woolgrowers to see if they are effective on their sheep in their environment.

Treating sheep with clips requires skill. Leader Products requires the use of contractors who have been accredited to apply them correctly.

The clips are a product of Australian Wool Innovations' breech flystrike prevention R&D program which commenced in 2005.

Leader Products in conjunction with the Livestock Contractors Association will be conducting training courses for people who want to become accredited Clip operators.

Australian Wool Innovation

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