Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1953 Page: 3
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LIVESTOCK PRODUCTION AFFECTED BY ANIMAL DISEASES 3
sciences concerned with human nutrition and health. Today there
is no letup in the intensive and systematic search for the solution of
many unsolved problems.
LIVESTOCK PRODUCTION AS AFFECTED BY ANIMAL
One of the greatest handicaps to efficient farming is the problem
of animal diseases. Because we cannot afford to live with such diseases,
State agricultural experiment stations and the U. S. Department
of Agriculture have been conducting a concentrated research
drive on this problem. Much has been done in developing helpful
forage and feed production practices and new and better feed crops;
in eliminating poisonous plants from ranges and pastures; in finding
new and more economical methods of feeding; in developing better
breeding practices; and in increasing the general knowledge about
animal physiology and in fields related to successful livestock
There is no way of telling accurately the actual economic losses to
animal production as a result of disease, parasitism, or various abnormal
conditions. Such figures as are released from time to time
are only estimates. They indicate that animal disease presents a
major economic obstacle that must be hurdled before the everincreasing
demands for meat and livestock products are met.
Two interesting sample estimates follow: The first, released in a
North Central Region publication, "Facts About Newcastle Disease,"
indicates an annual loss of $40,000,000 to the poultry industry as a
result of Newcastle disease. .This figure is broken down into death
losses, losses in gain in weight and egg production, and vaccination
costs. The second, released by the Indiana station, states that, "animal
agriculture during 1951 failed to realize a potential gross income
of $2,791,000,000 as a result of death losses alone." It further pointed
out that these staggering losses do not include decreased income due
to lowered production, stunted growth, or inefficient feed utilization
resulting from many diseases that are not ordinarily fatal to animals.
Maintenance of Animal Health
Advances in the field of animal health have been greatly enhanced
by the cooperation of veterinarians with other agricultural specialists.
At a number of the experiment stations a close integration of all
veterinary research in the different animal and biological departments
has been brought about. By using the know-how and tools
of participating specialists in other fields and cooperating with them,
the veterinarians have been able to broaden their studies and to more
rapidly establish and publish findings of fundamental importance
concerning the maladies affecting livestock. Thus the veterinarian
may find himself teamed with the nutritionist, geneticist, agronomist,
biochemist, soil specialist, agricultural engineer, livestock production
specialist, and others.
Summary statements in the first part of this report deal with specific
problems and announce results that experiment stations have reported.
Although the animal science departments have been leaders in much
of this research, they have also had the close cooperation of their col
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United States. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1953, book, 1953; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5989/m1/5/: accessed October 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.