There are hundreds of different diseases that can affect poultry, and free-range chickens may be more or less at risk.
Chickweed (sometimes called field chickweed) is an annual that is low growing and sprawling and can grow up to 70cm across.
For just about as long as animals have been farmed, they’ve been routinely subjected to several surgical procedures that make it easier for their owners to manage them - and they make life easier for the animals too.
Thirty years ago leptospirosis was one of the most common zoonoses in NZ with over 400 human cases a year, mainly in dairy farm workers. In recent years the widespread vaccination of pigs and dairy cattle has reduced the number of human cases to fewer than 100 a year. However there are still plenty of infected livestock on farms.
Most male cattle, sheep and goats are castrated while they are young, to make their management easier. It goes without saying that castration can be a very painful and distressing experience for the animal.