– Bacteriological AND Serological Studies of Brucellosis in Sheep and Goats in a Research Farm in Zaria, Nigeria –
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This study was aimed at detecting the presence of Brucella organisms and the prevalence of Brucella antibodies in sheep and goats in a Research Farm in Zaria, Nigeria. A total of 580 blood samples (265 from goats and 315 from sheep) were examined for culture and serology.
Blood samples with anticoagulants were cultured while serological tests such as; Rose Bengal plate test (RBPT), Serum agglutination test (SAT) and 2-Mercaptoethanol (2-ME) test were performed on sera collected. Brucella abortus antigens for RBPT and SAT from Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Weybridge, UK were used.
There were no growth of Brucellae from blood cultures. Rose Bengal plate test detected antibodies to Brucella organism in 33.58% (89/265) of the goats and 33.65% (106/315) in sheep
while SAT detected antibodies to Brucella organism in 25.66% (68/265) of goats and 6.35% (20/315) of the sheep and there was significant association between the presence of Brucella antibodies in goats and sheep using SAT (P<0.05).
RBPT detected antibodies to Brucella in 33.62% (195/580) of all goats and sheep sampled while SAT detected antibodies in 15.17% (88/580) of all the goats and sheep sampled, there was significant association between the use of RBPT and SAT in detection of antibodies in the goats and sheep (P<0.05).
1.1 Background of the Study
Animal population was estimated at 15.2 million cattle, 23 million sheep and 28 million goats in Ngeria (FAO, 2006). The minimum daily protein requirement is 0.45 grams per kilogramme of body weight per day (WH0, 2007).
About 80% of the estimated total animal population in Nigeria are still under the management of the traditional nomadic Fulani pastoralists who are accustomed to extensive system, the rest belong to Government-owned Livestock Centres and privately-owned farms (Ocholi, 2005).
Several constraints to livestock productivity have been identified. These include socio- cultural problems, poor nutrition, poor herd health management, diseases, poor housing and other environmental factors directly or indirectly affecting production (Nuru, 1982).
Many well-documented bacterial, viral and parasitic diseases (both directly and indirectly transmitted), occur commonly and are poorly controlled in both livestock and human populations (McDermott and Arimi, 2002).
Brucellosis has been identified to be one of the most significant diseases affecting livestock leading to heavy losses in productivity and profits (Eze, 1981).
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