Ankole cattle in Uganda get sprayed with a type of insecticide against ticks: it is a ‘duodip’ with Cypermethrin and Chlorpyrifos. Ticks (vectors) carry diseases and transmit them via bacteria to the cows. Antibiotics as Oxytetracycline are used to cure those diseases.
The Ugandan farmers recognize the consequences of spraying the cows with those chemicals. Noticing ticks become resistant and the need to spray more and more due to resistance. Flies disappear from the cattle manure; all microorganisms in manure have been eradicated. Also cattle egrets, which is a popular bird with cattle ranchers for its perceived role as a biocontrol of cattle parasites such as ticks, are rarely seen on the cattle nowadays. The Ugandan farmers are concerned about the effects of the chemicals on biodiversity, soil-, animal-, human health.
Our Indian colleagues -also involved in the E-motive exchange program- have knowledge of effective medicinal plants against ticks and as a replacement for antibiotics. Since the Frisian farmers recognize the problem of reduced biodiversity & soil life because of chemical use in Holland, a common search to traditional approaches and other alternatives to those chemicals has started. Together with Indian researchers, University of Wageningen (Holland) and the Ankole herdsmen we could find solutions that are effective and have less environmental impacts.