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Cattle Tick Control
Regulations in QLD


Changes to Cattle Tick Control Regulations in Queensland

The distribution of cattle ticks in Australia is largely controlled by regulation. A tick infested zone exists across northern Australia and is separated from the tick free zone in southern Australia by the ‘tick line’. A series of legislated movement controls are in place to maintain the tick free zone as free of ticks and periodic incursions are managed by quarantine and regulated eradication campaigns.1

Queensland has recently changed the way that cattle ticks are managed with implementation on July 1 2016 of the Biosecurity Act 2014.1 Regulations in NSW, NT and the Kimberley region of WA remain the same, however new legislation is due to be introduced in NSW.

The new Queensland legislation provides greater flexibility in regard to inspection and movement of cattle across the ‘tick line’ from the tick infested to the tick free zone of Queensland. The legislation also applies to the management of outbreaks of cattle tick in the tick free zone of the state, amongst other things. A summary of these requirements can be found on the DAFF website.1 Other states have similar regulations in place and it is important to check with relevant state authorities about current certification and movement requirements.

A key change under Queensland regulations is that macrocyclic lactone chemicals with a label claim for the control of cattle tick, including Dectomax® Injectable, may be used as the sole risk minimisation treatment prior to the movement of cattle from a property in the tick infested zone to the tick free zone. In the majority of cases, it is still a requirement for cattle to be presented free of ticks, with this now being determined by an ‘accredited certifier’.

On properties that are infested with cattle ticks, getting cattle free of ticks for inspection can generally only be achieved by prior treatment with a chemical that effectively controls cattle ticks. Dectomax Injectable is an excellent chemical for this purpose because it provides rapid and effective control of all stages of cattle tick.2-4

In the case of treatments applied prior to inspection, it is a legislated requirement that cattle be presented for inspection 6-9 days after treatment with an ML product with a claim for tick control. Note that the most common reason that cattle treated with Dectomax Injectable will fail inspection is because engorged female ticks nearing the end of their life cycle (19-21 days) fail to suck sufficient blood to kill them.4 To manage this, treating cattle immediately after injection with Dectomax Injectable with a dip or spray using either Amitraz or Cypermethrin/Chlorfenvinphos (i.e. Barricade S®) will give the best chance of cattle being free of ticks at time of inspection.

Note that the WHP and ESI need to be taken into consideration when planning treatments of cattle close to slaughter or destined for immediate slaughter. Dectomax Injectable has a 42 day WHP and ESI. The re-treatment interval for Dectomax Injectable is 28 days. If further treatments are required to clear cattle within this time frame, treatment must be with another chemical. Note that this must be a different chemical active (e.g. Moxidectin or Ivermectin) or a dip or spray (e.g. Amitraz or Cypermethrin/Chlorfenvinphos).

A range of documents relating to the treatment of cattle to allow movement across the tick line in Queensland as well as tick eradication are published on the DAFF website.1

For more information call Zoetis Veterinary Operations on 1800 814 883 or contact your local Zoetis Professional Sales Representative.


2. George JE, Davey RB (2004). Therapeutic and Persistent Efficacy of a Single Application of Doramectin Applied Either as a Pour-on or Injection to Cattle Infested with Boophilus microplus (Acari: Ixodidae) J. Med. Entomol. 41(3): 402-407.
3. Cox JW, Watson TG (1998). Doramectin injectable as a practical and effective management tool to control Boophilus microplus infestation of cattle in Queensland: In: Proc World Assoc for Buiatrics, Sydney.
4. Davey RB et al (2007). Efficacy of a Single Doramectin Injection against adult female Boophilus microplus (Acari: Ixodidae) in the final stages of engorgement before detachment, J. Med. Entomol. 44(2): 277-282.
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